The Internet blogger who threatened to assassinate tennis star Roger Federer at the Shanghai Masters on Sunday remains at large following the menacing comments posted on a popular Chinese website.
On the Chinese website, baidu.com, someone under the username "Blue Cat Polytheistic Religion Founder 07" posted this in a thread on the website (via MSN Sports):
On October 6, I plan to assassinate Federer for the purpose of tennis extermination.
According to MSN, the post was accompanied by a photo of a decapitated Federer on his knees alongside an executioner on the tennis court.
While the threat on Federer's life has been taken with extreme seriousness—his security has been beefed up, including when he's on the court—the blogger is still at large.
On Tuesday, another message appeared from the user:
I have not been arrested. I took the initiative to contact the relevant people to apologize.
While I don't expect this creep to be found, it's a shame that threatening words like the ones posted have affected Federer's preparation for the tournament.
Federer himself admitted that the post was distracting, according to Breaking News:
The directors of the tournament have done their best to keep Federer's mind off of the threatening message, releasing a statement that says they believe they have the proper security in place to keep the star safe, according to ESPN:
We are fully aware of the comments that have been made and we take all such issues seriously. 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 and allowed to do the job they are here for; to play tennis and provide their fans with the thrill of watching them in action.
Despite the increased security, Federer's wife and twin daughters are not in China with the 17-time Grand Slam winner. Whether that's in direct relation to the assassination threat is unknown, but you have to think that definitely factored into the decision.
It's an unfortunate situation for the standout tennis player, who entered this tournament with a first-round bye. No one should be forced to look over their shoulder and fear for their life while trying to compete in a professional sporting event, but I guess that's the nature of the human race today.
Regardless, I don't expect Federer to show any ill effects from the Internet blogger's bizarre comments. He's still the best player in his sport and looked solid in his first match against Yen-Hsun Lu, winning 6-3, 7-5.
Follow me on Twitter: Follow @Pete_Schauer