Legendary Serena Williams says she doesn’t “really remember” how the US Open final controversy unfolded which saw her get into a verbal confrontation with chair umpire Carlos Ramos. During the defeat to Naomi Osaka in straight sets, Serena was handed three separate violations which resulted in her losing her cool.
Serena accused long-time umpire Ramos of discrimination and branded him “a liar,” “a thief” and “sexist,” after he gave her a code violation for receiving coaching. Later, her coach admitted to coaching from the stands as Serena was overpowered in the final in September.
As she featured on the cover of the GQ magazine as the ‘Woman of the Year’, the 37-year-old stated she doesn’t exactly remember how things panned out during the altercation. “I don’t really remember how it went, to be honest,” Williams said. “I’ve been purposely not thinking about it. I don’t watch TV at all. I try to keep myself in a bubble as much as I can. I just don’t want to be involved in other people’s opinions. Let them live how they want to feel.”
The six-time US Open winner explained that the coaching code violation was “a trigger moment” which sparked the entire outrage on court.
“I’ve had a lot of things happen to me at the US Open,” she said. “I think about three or four different things. Especially in the later rounds. I think a person can be a little bit more sensitive to anything in that moment.
“You know, it becomes a trigger moment. When you go through a really extreme ordeal not once, not twice, not three times, it becomes a trigger moment,” she said.
Serena has had outbursts in the past as well at Flushing Meadows. In 2009, Serena was called for a foot fault which gave Kim Clijsters a match point which prompted the American to threaten the lineswoman to “shove this ball down your throat” resulting in a point penalty and the match. Then in 2011, Serena was fined $2000 by the tournament and given a code violation for verbal abuse in her final against Sam Stosur. Serena went on to berate the chair umpire by saying, “You’re a hater, and you’re just unattractive inside.”