Shanghai Masters organisers said they were taking a bizarre online death threat against Roger Federer “seriously” on Friday and pledged to keep the world number one safe.
A tournament official made the assurances after an unknown blogger threatened to assassinate the Swiss player, who will headline the tournament starting on Sunday. “We are fully aware of the comments that have been made and we take all such issues seriously,” the official said in a statement. “The Shanghai Rolex
Masters has security in place for our players and every precaution is taken to make sure players are kept safe and comfortable.”
The security alert was raised after hate messages from the blogger, who calls himself ‘Blue Cat Polytheistic Religion Founder 07’ appeared on the popular baidu.com site. “On October 6, I plan to assassinate Federer for the purpose of tennis extermination,” read the threat.
The user also posted a doctored image showing a decapitated Federer on his knees on a tennis court, with an axe-wielding executioner standing next to him. Police and other government agencies have been contacted to increase security around Federer, an official was quoted as saying.