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04/19/2007


Martina Navratilova to Compete on 'Dancing with the Stars' - Watch Full Announcement: VIDEO

Martina

Not sure when announcement of the Dancing with the Stars cast became such an 'event', but there was a big to-do on Good Morning America this morning.

Other competitors include Jack Wagner, Melissa Gilbert, Donald Driver, William Levy, Sherri Shepherd, Katherine Jenkins, Gavin DeGraw, Roshon Fegan, Maria Menounos, Jaleel White, and Gladys Knight.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Novak Djokovic's Shirt Rip-Offs: VIDEO

Novak

After Novak Djokovic's epic five-set match on Sunday to defeat Rafa Nadal, he did his signature victory shirt rip-off. But it's a shirt-snatcher who has become a viral Australian Open sensation.

Earlier in the match, or in the one prior, Novak attempted to toss his shirt into the crowd to a young girl and it was snatched out of the air by another fan, who's now getting the YouTube equivalent of being tarred and feathered.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Bad Winner Tomas Berdych Booed Off Court at Australian Open: VIDEO

Berdych

Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych was booed for several minutes following his Australian Open win against Nicolas Almagro after he refused to shake his opponent's hand.

Berdych faces Nadal next. Don't look for the fans to welcome him warmly.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Tennis Player Marcos Baghdatis Destroys 4 Racquets in One Minute at the Australian Open: VIDEO

Baghdatis

Frustrated over his match (which he later lost 7-6, 6-4, 5-7, 6-1) to Stanislas Wawrinka, tennis player Marcos Baghdatis smashed four Tecnifibre tennis racquets between sets at the Australian Open last night.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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British Tennis Player Laura Robson Brings LGBT Equality Message to Match at Australian Open

Robson

The Australian Open is expecting protests this week over remarks made by Grand Slam winning former tennis pro Margaret Court about gays, but officials there weren't expecting that one of the players would  (intentionally or not) make the first move.

The Guardian reports:

Robson, 18 next Saturday, was one of five British players who lost on the first day of the tournament but her trickiest assignment was fielding questions afterwards about her hairband. She claimed not to be making a political statement, and said she was unaware of a call by gay rights activists to take rainbow-coloured flags into the Margaret Court Arena. "It was just a rainbow-coloured hairband," Robson said. "I didn't see anything about a protest today. I wore it because I believe in equal rights for everyone. That's it."

She did, however, know of the recent comments Court had made, which were reported here and internationally because of her standing in the game. Her stand will be seen in a favourable light by those critics of Court astounded by her insensitivity on a subject that is regularly an issue in women's tennis.

"I did [know about the comments]," Robson said, "but it was through newspapers and things. I never saw a direct quote from her. So I don't want to comment when I actually haven't spoken to her. I believe in equal rights for everyone – that is why I wore it."

Tennis Australia last week distanced itself from Court's remarks. Court has said plans for a protest of her presence won't keep her away.


Tennis Australia Distances Itself from Margaret Court

Tennis Australia released a statement clarifying that it does not agree with anti-gay bigot Margaret Court:

CourtMargaret Court has won more grand slam titles than any other player and has been honoured for her achievements in tennis and she is a legend of the sport. We respect her playing record, it is second to none.

But her personal views are her own, and are definitely not shared by Tennis Australia. Like the WTA, we believe that everyone should be treated equally and fairly.  We concur wholeheartedly with the WTA who stated that “all human beings, regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or otherwise, should be treated equally. 

This is a fundamental right and principle, including within the world of sport.  Anyone advocating otherwise is advocating against fundamental and essential rights.”

TA does not support any view that contravenes these basic human rights.

Also:

Four-time grand slam doubles champion Rennae Stubbs says she fully backs activists showing their support for gay rights at the Australian Open starting next week.

Stubbs, who has been open about her homosexuality for six years, said it was only fair that people had the same voice as former Australian great Margaret Court who prompted a recent backlash because of her anti-gay views.

Activist groups are planning to protest Court next week at the Australian Open, with one activist calling for her name to be removed from Melbourne Park's show court arenas. She has said it won't keep her away.

For a recap of what Court has said recently, click HERE.


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