Serena Williams is sticking to her claims of sexism and double standards in tennis and maintains she wasn’t cheating during her US Open final loss.
The American superstar has been under the spotlight since being handed three code violations during her loss to Japan’s Naomi Osaka a week ago, where she verbally attacked umpire Carlos Ramos and later claimed women players were treated differently to men.
Williams has given her first interview since the controversy, appearing on Australian TV show The Sunday Projectand the 23-time grand slam champion didn’t back down.
She insisted there was no coaching going on during the match from her trainer Patrick Mouratoglou, despite him admitting he had been making signals.
“He said he made a motion,” Williams said in the Australian interview. “I don’t understand what he was talking about. We’ve never had signals.”
Williams’ on-court tantrum in New York included slamming her racket to the ground and calling Ramos “a thief”. She received a warning, was docked a point, then a game as her behaviour continued.
“I just don’t understand … if you’re a female you should be able to do even half of what a guy can do,” Williams said in her latest interview which echoed her feelings after the match.
Ramos made a mockery of those claims on Monday (NZT) as he handed out a code violation to Marin Cilic after the Croatia star slammed his racket to the clay and mangled the frame during a Davis Cup loss to Sam Querrey of the United States.
It was Ramos’s first assignment since the US Open as Croatia rallied to beat the US 3-2 and make the Davis Cup final.
Since it was the first violation of the match, it was only a warning. No points were deducted and Cilic did not exchange any words with Ramos.
“Usually when you break a racket you get a code violation,” Cilic said.
The normally collected Cilic lost his cool after committing a series of uncharacteristic errors late in the third set.
Cilic couldn’t recall the last time he had smashed a racket.
“I don’t know,” he said, adding that “it’s always a little bit more nervous” to play in the Davis Cup.
Querrey, who played in place of Steve Johnson, rallied to win 6-7 (2), 7-6 (6), 6-3, 6-4 and even the best-of-five semifinal at 2-2
Croatia’s Borna Coric was playing Frances Tiafoe in a decisive fifth rubber.
Croatia will play France in the Davis Cup final on November 23-25.
– with AP