Fabio Fognini has issued an apology for using an ethnic slur to refer to his Serbian opponent during his second round loss at the Hamburg Open. The 15th-ranked Italian lost 6-4, 6-0 to Serbia's Filip Krajinovic, a No. 149-ranked qualifier, in just 55 minutes on Wednesday, and the on-court microphones caught him say the phrase "Zingaro di merde" during the match, which translates to "Gypsy s---".
Video of the incident here:
Fognini tweeted an apology in Italian, blaming the heat of competition.
"I made a mistake," Fognini's translated tweet read. "I didn't want to offend anyone. ... I know Filip very well and anyone who plays sports knows that at times you get carried away saying things that make no sense.''
He finished his apology by seemingly taking a swipe at reporters for making a story out of his comments.
The ATP has not addressed whether Fognini will face a fine or any punishment for his conduct. In 2012, Michael Llodra was fined a paltry $2,500 for calling an Asian-American fan a "Chinese whore" during a match in Indian Wells.
Fognini's reprehensible behavior comes a few weeks after he was hit with a total of $29,500 worth of fines at Wimbledon for varying forms of unsportsmanlike conduct, including berating and making personal insults against chair umpire James Keothavong and supervisor Wayne McKewan.