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the two outbursts of fury that marked his brilliant tennis career

Serena Williams argues with judge Carlos Ramos during the final against Naomi Osaka in 2018 – Credits: @Mike Stobe

Cool, unique and controversial. Great champion and, at the same time, with a relationship with manners always on the limit. She is probably the greatest of all time and, at the same time, the owner of scandals that shook the world of tennis. Serena Williamsone of the most important tennis players of all time, will be 41 years old on September 26. But he has already begun to say goodbye to the circuit and the US Open would be his last performance. This Tuesday she announced that “The countdown has begun” and she confessed that she wants to be a mother again.

His official appearances on the courts were, in recent times, in drops. Her participation in Wimbledon, on June 28 (lost in the first round against the French Harmony Tan), was her first performance in a season. Each presentation contains a particular story and ends up representing a true delight for the fans of the former number 1.

The Canadian WTA 1000, in Toronto, is the scene of one of the last challenges for the winner of 23 Grand Slam singles trophies. After passing through the All England, the youngest of the Williams sisters -unranked today- defeated the Spanish Nuria Parrizas Díaz (57th) by 6-3 and 6-4, in what was her first victory in the individual draw of a contest from Roland Garros 2021 (on June 4, 2021, against his compatriot Danielle Collins, for the third round of the Major French).

A few hours after his victory in Toronto, a post on his official Instagram account shook the racket world. There, Serena announced that soon the end of his cinematographic sports life will come. The next few weeks will be his last (probably at the US Open), as he wants to give rise to the “Serene mother”. Her four-year-old daughter Olympia watched her from the stands in the match with Parrizas Díaz. Flushing Meadows, the New York Grand Slam that he won six times (the last time in 2014), will start on the 29th of this month.

Serena’s farewell. ‘I’m terrible at goodbyes,’” reads the September cover of Vogue magazine. And she goes further: “I have never liked the word retirement (…) Perhaps the best word to describe what I am doing is evolution. I’m here to tell you that i’m walking away from tennistoward other things that are important to me.”

Right there, on the cement of the Big Apple, Serena offered the best of her repertoire (power, speed, mind of steel) and, at the same time, doses of her Strong personality. There were two episodes, above all, that marked part of her career.

Serena Williams, always on the edge

Serena Williams, always on the edge – Credits: @GLYN KIRK

In 2018. The American, who lost the final 6-2 and 6-4 against the Japanese Naomi Osakawas about to be disqualified, after receiving a first warning (warning) for coaching (receiving advice from her coach), a second for breaking a racket and the third for calling the Portuguese chair umpire a “liar” and a “thief” Carlos Ramos.

The umpire first sanctioned Serena by noting that Serena’s coach, Frenchman Patrick Mouratoglou, was making signs with his hands, so that part of the fine was $4,000. Added to that was an additional $3,000 for smashing the racket after losing the fifth game of the second set, which also resulted in the loss of a point.

Serena lost her composure during that break and got into a verbal duel with Ramos, to whom she reproached: “You attack my personality, that’s wrong. You owe me an apology. You are a liar and a thiefYou stole a point from me.” And she immediately insisted: “You are never going to referee my games again. Never”. Ramos announced at that time a new sanction for “verbal abuse” of the player; As per the rules, the penalty meant she also lost a game, so she went from 3-4 to 3-5. For that action, Serena received a $10,000 fine for violating the code of conduct, a figure that added to the punishments for coaching and racket breakage resulted in the $17,000 penalty.

Far from repenting, at the press conference after the final, Serena accused Ramos of taking a “sexist” position, stating: “I saw men’s games in which they said a lot of things to the chair umpires. I am here fighting for women’s rights, for women’s equality. I feel that being penalized with the loss of a game was a sexist decision on her part.” The incidents in the final led to an unfortunate awards ceremony, in which Ramos was unable to receive the usual medal given to the chair umpires in the final. Similarly, Osaka almost had to apologize for being champion against Serena, to the booing of thousands of spectators at the Arthur Ashe, and was unable to bask in the joy of capturing her first Grand Slam title.

Serena Williams upset, speaking with the linesman (LR), Grand Slam supervisor Donna Kelso and head referee Brian Earley, during the semifinals against Kim Clijsters

Serena Williams upset, speaking with the linesman (LR), Grand Slam supervisor Donna Kelso and head referee Brian Earley, during the semifinals against Kim Clijsters – Credits: @Simon Bruty

The scandal that starred in the women’s final of the US Open did not lead to a strong punishment. On the one hand, the former world number 1 was fined $17,000 for her behavior; less than a change, if you take into account that her prize as her finalist was US $ 1,850,000.

At the 2009 US Open, Williams scandalously lost the semifinal against Kim Clijsters. The Belgian was playing her first tournament after two years off the tour due to maternity, and she was beating the youngest of the Williams 6-4, 6-5, when Serena committed a foot fault which led to a double fault (15-40); he had no better idea than to threaten the line judge who charged him for the foul. The official went to the umpire and reported what had happened. After the entry of the tournament supervisor, the tournament authorities had no choice but to apply the verbal abuse sanction to Serena, thus losing the point and the match. In the final, Clijsters beat Caroline Wozniacki.

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