Well the ground swell and the outrage concerning the world’s #2 female tennis player has been wide ranging. Serena Williams‘ vain and naive attempt at an act of contrition would be about as believable – if a racist were to apologize after a racial attack on a minority while still laughing over the matter. Immeasurable damage has been done and so too here , in the case of Williams’ unwarranted outburst.
Williams’ outburst in her straight sets semi-finals’ loss to Kim Clijsters of Belgium.
What is even more appalling is the very fact that the USTA has failed to act appropriately. Merely firing the player , $10,500-00 for the outburst and for racket violation , pertaining to her demeanor when smashing her racket in her semi-final loss to the Belgian, Kim Clijsters . At best a suspension is warranted but we’re now being told that the Grand Slam committee will be weighing in further – as to whether or not any additional punishment will meted out against Williams.
It smacks in the face of decency and when one considers that women’s tennis is essentially one of the last bastions of etiquette and sportsmanship. One has to wonder what it is that the committee needs to assess further before doing the right thing.
In the past few days we’ve seen that civility has been left by the wayside. From Kanye West‘s asinine rant at an awards ceremony. To a member of Congress , Rep Joe Wilson (R-SC), calling the President of the United States a liar while he addresses both houses in a joint session . It would appear that this is the example that some might want to set for a younger generation.
Williams’ post-game press conference after her semi-final ouster at the US Open held at the Billie Jean National Tennis Center at Flushing , New York.
It’s somewhat ironic when you hear former player now turned television tennis analyst , John McEnroe , weighing in on the matter by stating “… Williams’ behavior was uncalled for .” In his heydays McEnroe was the poster child for unruly behavior on the court. I guess for McEnroe middle age has made him mellow over the course of time ?
In what is one of the world’s premier tennis events. The US Open is one of the four major tennis tournaments that comprises of Wimbledon , The French Open and the Australian Open. It makes up the quartet of events known as the Grand Slam And it’s deemed an honor to bear one’s name on any of the trophies in question. And as much as Williams can be admired for her tennis career. There was nothing at all admirable about her behavior and its aftermath, at all.
Kim Clijsters has to be admired for the restraint shown and the dignity with which she carried herself. Few athletes when placed in such a situation would then take the high road and not comment on the matter. If anything Williams’ outburst tainted Clijsters’ victory as it was Serena who became the topic of the moment – instead of the fans being able to bask in Clijster’s victory and the historical context of it all. She’s only the second mother to have won a tennis major in the past thirty years in the ‘Open Era’. And to think that she was able to have achieved this – after returning from a self imposed retirement to start a family is all the more amazing . Especially when one considers that this was only her third tournament back and that she was a wild-card entrant at the US Open.
Courtesy of Yahoo Sports and AP :
By Rachel Cohen AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP)—Kim Clijsters missed her grandfather’s 80th birthday party.
She doesn’t remember which tournament it was—five years ago, probably the French Open or Wimbledon. Back then, she was a young player chasing Grand Slam titles and the world’s No. 1 ranking.
Clijsters was again atop her sport Monday just three tournaments into her return from 2 1/2 years of retirement. She won the U.S. Open the night before, then re-entered the WTA rankings at No. 19.
But now no major, no number comes before her family.
“Little things like that are very special, because you never know how many more of those years you’re going to have,” Clijsters said.
So she’s headed home to Belgium, not planning to play again for more than a month. Her sister is due to give birth in a couple of weeks.
“It’s nice to now be able to make my own schedule, to say, ‘Look, this is something that’s really important to me and I want to be there for that,”’ Clijsters said. “I don’t want to miss it.
“That’s a nice feeling to have that I can choose.”
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