Monday, November 30, 2009

Serena Williams’ verdict is finally in - after almost 3 months!

The top ranked woman on the WTA tour has been fined $82,500 for her outlandish behavior during the 2009 U.S. Open semi-final loss to Kim Clijsters of Belgium. According to Liz Clarke of the Washington Post, Ms. Williams fine amounts to 8.25% of the $1 million she could have been fined under the event’s Code of Conduct.
One of my favorite tennis commentators, Mary Carillo, said it best when she called the verdict a “cockamamie decision”. "Serena Williams physically threatened and verbally assaulted an official during one of the most watched tennis matches of 2009, and after three months of thoughtful, considered cogitation, the Grand Slam Committee came up with 'Grand Slam Probation' and a 'suspended ban'?" Carillo wrote. "And half of what was deemed to be her fine? Boy, that ought to show everyone." 
Ms. Carillo was referring to the probation that Ms. Williams is subject to through 2011. If Ms. Williams does not commit another “Major Offense” in any of the Grand Slam events through 2011, then she will not be suspended from the U.S. Open for one year and subject to an additional fine of $82,500. By the way, Ms. Williams earned $6.5 million this year. Her fine must really hurt!
What do you think about this verdict? I would be interested in hearing opinions from others, even those that disagree with my critical assessment of the final outcome. For those that did not see the U.S. Open “performance” by Ms. Williams, the following YouTube video is attached.


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