Olympics: Paire kicked off Rio team for 'flouting rules'

France's Benoit Paire kneels on the court during his men's second round singles tennis match against Italy's Fabio Fognini at the Olympic Tennis Centre of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on August 9.
France's Benoit Paire kneels on the court during his men's second round singles tennis match against Italy's Fabio Fognini at the Olympic Tennis Centre of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on August 9. PHOTO: AFP

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - French tennis player Benoit Paire was booted out of his country's Olympic Games squad on Tuesday for "flouting the rules", an official said.

"You cannot flout the rules and the jersey like this," said Arnaud di Pasquale, the technical director of the French tennis squad.

Di Pasquale refused to divulge the details of Paire's indiscretions but confirmed that the 27-year-old had been ordered to pack his bags.

Paire was kicked off the squad just moments after he had been knocked out of the Olympics by Italy's Fabio Fognini, 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/5) in a second round tie where he had held two match points.

"This is not the first time he has been warned. The France team, it is not an open bar. There are rules to follow. The decision was made last night (Monday)," added di Pasquale. "We did not see much of him in the Olympic Village."

The combustible Paire is no stranger to controversy.

After a first round loss at Wimbledon in 2014, he declared: "I hate this place. It displeases me greatly."

He was accused of tanking a match in Italy later that year while he almost came to blows with Croatia's Ivo Karlovic at the Washington tournament.

Paire refused to directly address his banishment.

"Now I know how the

Olympics are, I am happy to leave," he said on Tuesday. "The tournament was good preparation for me. My tennis is there again and it's in a good place. The rest is secondary."

Paire was a late addition to the French team for Rio, replacing Richard Gasquet who was forced out with a back injury.

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