janvier 28, 2023

Australian Open news 2023, Karen Khachanov message to Artsakh should be punished, says Azerbaijan Tennis Federation

2 min read

The Azerbaijan Tennis Federation has sent a memo to the International Tennis Federation demanding action against Australian Open semi-finalist Karen Khachanov.

Khachanov progressed to the final four of the men’s draw with a walkover victory against Sebastian Korda on Tuesday.

Khachanov represents Russia on tour, but also represents his Armenian roots, and has used his Open run to send support to Artsakh amid the ongoing Azerbaijani blockade.

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After his second-round victory he wrote on the camera, « Keep believing all the way until the end! Artsakh stay strong! ».

Karen Khachanov had the people of Artsakh in his thoughts after booking a quarter final spot at the Australian Open (Nine)

He later explained the reason behind the writing.

« I have said many times that I respect and appreciate my [Armenian] roots. I am a citizen of Russia, I represent Russia, but I have Armenian blood from my father’s and mother’s side, » Khachanov said.

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« I want to support them in any way, to give [them] faith and strength. »

The Azerbaijan Tennis Federation wants the player sanctioned over the comments.

« Karen Khachanov… attracted attention with his hateful act, » a statement read.

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« The Azerbaijan Tennis Federation letter presented facts and legal documents regarding the provocation against Azerbaijan.

« The ATF condemned this act and demanded the tennis player be punished and urged the (ITF) to take harsh measures for prevention of such incidents in the future. »

After his quarter-final win over Korda, Khachanov was asked specifically about the ATF’s letter.

« I didn’t hear anything about that, » he responded.

Khachanov said he has not been told to stop writing anything on the cameras after his matches.

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