The Reuters global sports blog
Serena outburst: was there any excuse?
OK, don’t shoot me down for saying this, but can anyone see Saturday’s double-fault storm at the US Open from Serena Williams’s point of view?
With a place in the U.S. Open final at stake — and with many believing the winner of the Williams-Kim Clijsters showdown would go on to win the title — how frustrating is it to get foot-faulted on a second serve at 4-6 5-6 15-30 down?
Can anyone remember when someone was foot-faulted at such an important moment of a key match like a grand slam semi-final before?
Should a line-judge go by the book if she sees a foot-fault or would it have been better to have just let it go at such a crucial point in the contest?
With the adrenaline already pumping through her, and the thought of going match point down, Serena lost control.
Astounded by the verdict, she flipped out and marched to the official, shouting, waving her racket and shaking a ball in her clenched fist.
“I swear to God I’m… going to take this… ball and shove it down your… throat, you hear that? I swear to God. You better be glad — you better be glad that I’m not, I swear.” Williams told the line-judge in her expletive-laden rant.
There is no excuse for the language or the tone she used against a woman who was simply doing her job, but can people at least understand the state of mind Serena found herself in?
And will this episode forever be a stain on her record, no matter how many grand slam titles she wins?
PHOTO: Serena Williams yells at a line judge after being called for a foot foul during her semi-final match against Kim Clijsters of Belgium at the U.S. Open in New York, September 12, 2009. REUTERS/Shaun Best