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And you thought TO's celebrations were bad...

Discussion in 'Sports Zone' started by Danny White, May 28, 2004.

  1. Danny White

    Danny White Winter is Coming

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    Safin raises eyebrows by dropping shorts in five-set victory

    PARIS -- Marat Safin celebrated a particularly nifty shot at the French Open by mooning the crowd, which raised the question: What will he do if he wins the tournament?

    The mercurial Russian advanced to the third round Friday by winning a two-day marathon against Felix Mantilla, 6-4, 2-6, 6-2, 6-7 (4-7), 11-9. The match was suspended Thursday because of darkness at 7-all in the fifth set and ended 24 minutes after it resumed when Mantilla sailed a backhand long.

    Afterward, Safin was still annoyed about being penalized a point for dropping his shorts early in the fifth set Thursday.

    "I felt it was a great point for me," the former U.S. Open champion said. "I felt like pulling my pants down. What's bad about it?"

    To celebrate a drop shot he hit for a winner, Safin grabbed his shorts, pulled them down to his thighs and leaned over. The crowd cheered and laughed.

    "Nobody complained," Safin said. "Everybody was OK. It wasn't like really bad."

    He hitched up his pants with a smile, but it disappeared when chair umpire Carlos Bernardes Jr. penalized Safin a point. The Russian argued in vain with Bernardes and ITF supervisor Mike Morrissey, then applauded the ruling facetiously before play resumed.

    Safin said tennis officials discourage making the sport fun.

    "They tried to destroy the match," he said. "All of the people who run the sport, they have no clue. It's a pity that the tennis is really going down the drain. Every year it's getting worse and worse and worse. There has to be a radical change, and I hope it will be really soon."

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