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Controversey flares as Williams gets robbed due to sexism

by Bridgette Babb - Copy Editor
Tue, Sep 18th 2018 04:20 pm
A Heated Exchange - Professional American tennis player, Serena Williams (left), called out Portuguese tennis umpire Carlos Ramos (right), during a match against Naomi Osaka, of Japan, in the Women's Final of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Saturday, Sept. 8.
A Heated Exchange - Professional American tennis player, Serena Williams (left), called out Portuguese tennis umpire Carlos Ramos (right), during a match against Naomi Osaka, of Japan, in the Women's Final of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Saturday, Sept. 8.

In a society where women fight everyday for equal rights in all aspects, it is important to have celebrities to speak up against injustice. 

Serena Williams made headlines once again for a heated argument between her and chair umpire, Carlos Ramos, over false accusations at the 2018 U.S. Open Finals. 

Williams seems to always have to endure ridicule in her sport no matter what she does. The match against Japan’s Naomi Osaka highlighted just how unfair umpires can really be in their rulings. Williams accused Ramos of being sexist after insisting her coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, gave her hand   signals from the stands.

“I am not a cheater. He alleged that I was cheating and I wasn’t cheating,”  Williams said. 

She went on to say how she did not use on-court training, and that it was extremely insensitive for Ramos to suggest that. 

He concluded that a simple thumbs up from coach Mouratoglou displayed the pair using signals. The multiple unneeded penalties seemed to anger Williams even more, telling Ramos he owes her an apology. 

Ramos continued to cut down the 32-year-old tennis player, giving her a penalty point for smashing her racquet roughly, and a game penalty for confronting him. 

“You stole a point from me and you are a thief,” Williams said to Ramos. “I don't cheat. I'd rather lose. Every time I play here, I have problems.” 

With Williams receiving three penalties, the final was rewarded to Osaka. 

Williams is now being fined $17,000 by the U.S. Tennis Association for her outburst during her contentious loss in the U.S. Open. 

At a press conference following the match, Williams spoke out on the differences between how women are treated in games compared to men because men are given a lot more freedom and can speak as they please. 

“I’ve seen other men call other umpires several things. I’m here fighting for women’s rights and for women’s equality. He’s never taken a game from a man because he said ‘thief.’ For me it blows my mind, but I will continue to fight for women,” Willams said.

The International Tennis Federation disagreed with Williams, and stated “Carlos Ramos is one of the most experienced and respected officials in tennis. Mr. Ramos’ decisions were in accordance with the relevant rules.” 

They went on in the defense of Ramos to say that since Williams is such a big name, they expected backlash from fans and that Ramos acted with integrity and professionalism. Of course they would say that. They rewarded Ramos a gold badge in umpiring and they didn't want to look bad. 

Williams' sister, Venus Williams has also had problems with Ramos in the past. During the 2016 French Open, Ramos accused the other Williams of also receiving coaching during a match, the same penalty Serena received at the U.S. Open Final. 

This is not the first time female tennis players have been bashed for simple things the umpires have viewed as inappropriate. 

Just a few weeks before the grand slam, fellow player Alize Cornet was given a violation for taking off her shirt during a break due to a heatwave. Upon going back to the court she realized the shirt was on wrong and tried to change it, earning her the violation. 

In the same instance, male players such as John Isler, who changed his shirt in the open court eleven times will no penalties or backlash. Men can be free, but women must change in “a more private location close to the court, when available.” 

The problem doesn't just lie with who can show their skin and who can't. In 2015, Canadian tennis player, Eugenie Bouchard was asked by a Canadian reporter to give the crowed a “twirl” when she was wearing a hot pink tennis skirt, after claiming a victory. The whole exchange was entirely awkward, as Bouchard clearly showed she felt uncomfortable during the exchange. 

With all the attention on this debacle, the spotlight was stolen from Osaka, who made history by being the first Japanese player to win the grand slam title. 

She stated that Williams was one of her idols, and felt that she had cheated her from the 24th win somehow. 

“When I step onto the court, I feel like a different person, right? I’m not a Serena fan. I'm just a tennis player playing another tennis player,” Osaka said. “But when I hugged her at the net I felt like a kid again.”

She spoke on how focused she was    during the game, with it being her first, and that she did not even realize Williams got those penalties until she told Osaka. Nevertheless, Williams showed great sportsmanship, congratulating Osaka on the win and making sure she knew that the issues had nothing to do with her.  

Given the recent articles about how male tennis player, Jamie Murray thinks Williams' claims are “a bit far-fetched,” it's  funny how male tennis players think they can twist their logic onto something       concerning women's rights. 

It looks like women still cannot receive equal treatment in the tradtional sport of tennis.