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Old 01-27-2009, 10:31 AM   #131
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Tennis.com is one of my least favourite sites. Finding there nonsensical articles, even rubbishy sometimes, it's not rare... The following blog entry was written by Tom Perrotta though.
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http://tennisworld.typepad.com/strin...tis-night.html

Baghdatis Nights
Posted 01/26/2009 @ 12 :56 AM



He won't reach the final this year, won't stand in the rain as his flag waiving fans dance and sing. He won't work quite as late as he did last year, when he fought Lleyton Hewitt until 5:30 a.m. For the third time in four years, though, Marcos Baghdatis has given Melbourne a fabulous late-night memory, even if he was again cast in the supporting role.

Not that he's particularly pleased about it. Baghdatis, the forgotten member of next generation after an injury-filled season in 2008, knows that he belongs alongside the game's best players, a fact that was obvious to anyone who watched his thoroughly entertaining--and at times electric--fourth-round loss against Novak Djokovic, the defending champion, 6-1, 7-6(1), 6-7(5), 6-2. Baghdatis's talent is abundant. His confidence, unfortunately, is fleeting.

"I have one regret and that's that I didn't believe I could win this match, and that pisses me off a bit," Baghdatis said at a little after 3:00 a.m. Monday morning. "It's the same story. I'm 23 and I had these problems when I was 20, so I just want to maybe change them for once."

Baghdatis, never one to withhold a wry comment, found one benefit to playing until 2:30 a.m.

"My objective was to play the second week of the Aussie Open, so, I made it by a bit, by three hours, so thanks to the tournament director who put me late so I could make it," he said.

Djokovic, who started this tournament slowly, was in vintage 2008 form by the middle of the second set, smashing his forehand, serving big, and pounding his broad chest, much to the delight of his boisterous fans. Baghdatis stayed with him step for step, his fast hands whipping the ball and his feet whirling along like they did three years ago, when he reached the final as a 20-year-old. One could see, though, that the pace of the match--the speed of the ball and the quick thinking required to survive each point--came easier to Djokovic. Like Baghdatis, Djokovic pushed his way into the Top 10 at a young age. But he hasn't budged and he's more comfortable working without time. At the end of the night, Baghdatis' Cyrpiot supports saluted Djokovic and chanted his name. Touched, Djokovic thanked them.

"We are Orthodox brothers," he said, inspiring a rousing applause.

In tournament mired by fan violence and misbehavior, this moment of camaraderie and acceptance put the finishing touch on what is now a Melbourne ritual, a spectacular Baghdatis Night.
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