SPORTS

Showman Baghdatis booked for Sydney

Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus, who captured the hearts of fans with a stunning run to the finals of the Australian Open, will return Down Under in January for the Sydney International. The world No 11 will be part of one of the strongest fields in the tournament’s history. «We are thrilled to have Marcos as part of the men’s draw. Marcos is one of the showmen in tennis right now. He has a great personality and the crowds love to watch him play,» said director Craig Watson. «Without doubt, Marcos has been one of the tennis discoveries of 2006 and the sport is fortunate to have a talent like him.» Baghdatis, who reached the Wimbledon semifinals this year after defeating Lleyton Hewitt, is playing the Sydney tournament for the first time as part of his preparation for the Australian Open. The tournament runs from January 7-13. The Open will be played from January 15-28. Meanwhile, Greece’s Eleni Daniilidou, ranked 36 in the world, advanced to the second round of the Gaz de France Stars tournament in Hasselt, Belgium, with a 0-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Japanese opponent Ai Sugiyama, the world’s No 26. (AFP, Kathimerini)