US Tennis apologizes after playing Nazi-era German anthem

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US Tennis apologizes after playing Nazi-era German anthem

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SportsCafe Desk

02/13/2017

US Tennis has apologized to German players after playing a since-removed stanza of the German national anthem that had been associated with the Nazi regime in the Fed Cup opening ceremony yesterday. Germany's Andrea Petkovic led the players' outrage against the blunder but received a prompt apology.

The version played at the ceremony included the first stanza which reads "Deutschland, Deutschland uber alles, uber alles in der Welt" and translates as "Germany, Germany, above all, above all in the world". It was used by the Nazi regime as propaganda and was dropped after the Second World War because of its association with Adolf Hitler.

Unfortunately, the soloist on the Hawaiian island of Maui somehow sung the wrong version, reported Reuters.

Germany's Andrea Petkovic, Bosnia-born, was livid at the press conference and said that she considered walking off the court when it happened.

"I thought it was the epitome of ignorance, and I've never felt more disrespected in my whole life, let alone in Fed Cup," she said.

Petkovic later said her comments had been somewhat emotional.

"We were left shocked and did not know how to react," Petkovic said.

She also later tweeted saying, "It was a mistake for which the Americans apologized to us," on Sunday. "And again, it's not the worst that ever happened to me in my LIFE. But it is the worst that happened to me in my Fed Cup life."

German team coach Barbara Ritter also slammed the blunder and said that it was "an absolute scandal, a disrespectful incident and inexcusable".

German tennis federation chief Ulrich Klaus acknowledged the apology and said, "Our American hosts at the Fed Cup opening in Hawaii made a mistake that should not happen," in a statement.

"The fact that in the year 2017 a wrong anthem can be played that is associated with the horror of the past was for players and staff and the officials present both shocking and disturbing."

"The USTA through its president Katrina Adams has apologized officially in writing and in person and deeply regrets the blunder."

Riske won the opening rubber to give the U.S. a 1-0 lead. Bad weather prevented any further play on the opening day of the tie.

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