Rather than condemning Baghdatis, other players were apparently impressed, world No 1 Novak Djokovic was even planning to YouTube Baghdatis’s violent tantrum.
After going down a break in the third set, having already lost the first two, a fuming Baghdatis sat in his chair at the change-over and whacked his racquet seven times on the court until it was completely mangled.
The Cypriot then calmly gave it to a ballboy before picking three more from his bag – two still in plastic wrappers – and breaking those one by one.
The tantrum briefly boosted Baghdatis, who recovered to win the set before bombing out of the tournament with a 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 5-7 6-1 defeat.
Despite having the power to fine players up to $US2000 for each incident of racquet abuse, the grand slam committee only served up an $US800 ticket to Baghdatis.
But Baghdatis’s light punishment didn’t seem to bother his colleagues from the locker room.
“I heard about it. I haven’t seen that. I’m going to go to YouTube now, check that out,” Djokovic said when asked what he thought of Baghdatis’s antics.
Djokovic rated renowned hot heads Goran Ivanisevic and Marat Safin as “right up there” with the best racquet-smashers of all and said sometimes it helped to release your frustrations.
“I loved watching them,” the Serb said. “In my case, I’ve stopped doing it. I’m not doing it as often, which is good for my coach, good news.”
Maria Sharapova tended to agree.
“I didn’t know he broke a racquet, but I’m not surprised that he broke a racquet,” said the women’s 2008 champion.
“Personally I haven’t broken too many in my career. Don’t recall breaking one during a match. Have broken a couple at practice. But it must be a good feeling. Yeah, just let it all go, I guess.”
Another former No 1, smiling Serb Ana Ivanovic, didn’t think obliterating racquets was so bad either.
“You might be surprised, but I do smash racquets sometimes,” Ivanovic said.
Five-times Open champ Serena Williams said Baghdatis’s effort was “impressive”.
“I actually used to break a lot of racquets on the court. I sometimes break them in practice, just not in a match anymore,” Williams said.
“I think when you’re young it kind of maybe lets out a little frustration. It just is a way to express yourself.
“I think those players are super, super intense. So I can’t necessarily go and say you shouldn’t do that when I was actually someone that did it a lot.
“I got to a place where I could see how many places I could crack in a racquet. I got five. This is great.
“But it’s definitely not the best way to release your anger. I think the older you get, you realise there’s more different ways.”