Fognini apologizes for ethnic slur towards opponent in Hamburg loss

Thursday July 17th, 2014

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. 

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