The U.S. Open has asked tennis player Serena Williams to pay a fine of $2,000 for berating the chair umpire during the finals against Australia’s Samantha Stosur.
The ruling was issued by the tournament referee, Brian Earley, a day after Serena Williams was cited by chair umpire Eva Asderaki for a code violation for verbal abuse during the finals in the women’s singles championship match at Flushing Meadows.
As per the statement issued by the U.S. Tennis Association, the fine ‘is consistent with similar offenses at Grand Slam events’.
The U.S. Tennis Association also said that Grand Slam committee director, Bill Babcock, conducted his own review and determined that while Williams’ conduct was verbally abusive, it did not rise to the level of a major offense under the Grand Slam Code of Conduct.
Serena Williams was put under ‘probationary period’ after she threatened a line judge for a foot-fault call in the match against Kim Clijsters in the 2009 U.S. Open semifinals. If her conduct in the Sunday’s finals had been considered a major offense, Williams would have faced further disciplinary action.
In the U.S. Open finals against Stosur, Williams faced a break point while serving in the first game of the second set.
Williams ripped a forehand and yelled ‘Come on!’ Eva Asderaki ruled that the scream came while Stosur was reaching for a backhand, so the point wasn’t finished. Based on the hindrance rule, Asderaki awarded the point to Stosur, putting the Australian ahead 1-0 in that set.
That set Williams off on a series of insults directed at the official, a scene far reminiscent of her tirade on the same court two years ago.