What happened at the U.S Open

The U.S.​ Open Was Unfair To Naomi Osaka And She Can Thank A Sexist White Man For That

Osaka felt so bad for her win she even apologized to the audience


Last week Naomi Osaka should have played the proudest and most competitive match of her tennis career. Win or lose, headlines around the world would have named the 20-year-old Haitian-Japanese athlete the #1 or #2 female tennis player in the world after sharing a court with the G.O.A.T, Serena Williams. But through a whirlwind game of controversies, Osaka was damn near stripped of her proudest moment and was reduced to tears as she stood in front of a booing crowd after being named the victor.

For anyone who didn't watch the match, I'll go over the broad strokes of what happened.

First, Serena Williams received a violation for "illegal coaching" during the second set. According to the chair umpire, Carlos Ramos, Williams was being "coached" by her coach during the game, which is considered illegal in tennis. The accusation was both challenged by the athlete and later others who claimed that Serena's coach was behind her during that point in the match where he gave her a "thumbs up" and there's no way she was even able to see him. The penalty prompted Serena to dispute the umpires claims, saying that she has never cheated in her career. It seemed as though the umpire let it go.

What happened next shocked even the tennis world and shifted the momentum of the game. The umpire then docked Williams a game point (which is a HUGE deal in tennis) after she broke her racquet. Of course, Williams was upset. Rightfully so. And we can go back and forth all day on whether Williams was being dramatic or not by breaking a racquet in the first place, but at the end of the day, tennis players (especially male tennis players) have responded the same way in the heat of the moment and faced ZERO penalties. A reaction which should have prompted a "warning," docked her an entire point as the umpire refused to believe that Serena had been honest earlier in the game about not cheating. Williams' score went from being down 4-3 to 5-3, which ultimately cost her the game.

A visibly confused Serena again disputed this claims of being coached and demanded an apology, which the umpire would not give. Instead, he docked her a second game point for "verbal abuse," after she called him a "thief" for taking away the first game point.

"This has never happened in tennis before. I have never seen anything like it," were the exact words from a game announcer.

Serena Williams was clearly robbed of a fair game, but so was U.S Open newcomer, Naomi Osaka who was robbed of beating Williams on her own terms in a fair match. Her victory was overshadowed by the racism and sexism shown to her opponent and she was forced to stand next to Williams during the trophy celebration amidst booing as fans and other tennis players protested Ramos' treatment of Williams.

A visibly shaken Osaka was reduced to tears as she accepted her trophy and $3.8 million dollar check. The poor girl even felt the need to pull her visor down to cover her face and apologize to the audience for her win. And all of this because of a sexist umpire who refused with all of his might to treat Serena Williams with the same respect he gives to the male tennis players he shares the court with.

Naomi Osaka receiving words of encouragement after wiping away tears.YouTube

Now, of course, the dialog shifted how "arrogant," and childish the big black lady was, but that's an article for next time. Though rightfully upset at her treatment, Williams gracefully embraced her competitor and offered the young tennis star words of encouragement.

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A Beginner's Guide To Watching Tennis

A beginner's guide to the gentlemen's sport.

Tennis is the gentleman’s sport. Since the origin of the modern game in 1859 by Harry Gem, tennis has been intriguing, not for the masses, but rather the one percent.

That is, unfortunately, a problem because many kids who would be well-suited for competitive tennis end up playing recreational soccer and earning participation trophies when they could be winning championships. The sole reason; they aren’t exposed to tennis at a young age. But ignoring that rant, tennis is seemingly a dull sport, so here is a guide to watching tennis that makes it just a bit easier to enjoy the match.

One of the first things I recommend is to find out what tournament is going on when you want to watch a match. Tennis is on TV for about ten months during the year, thus it shouldn’t be too hard to find a match. Before you watch the match though you should do a quick research of the tournament and get some basic details, such as the surface on which it is played. This determines the style of game that you might see during the match. Then I recommend you find out who is playing. Most tournaments that are televised feature big names such as Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Andy Murray, Stanislas Wawrinka, and Rafael Nadal, just to name a few, but you may also see names that are less familiar, such as Nick Kyrgios, an Australian sensation on the rise. If many of these players are playing, then that indicates that the tournament is quite a big one.

The next step to watching a match is to choose a favorite player. If it is a doubles match, then choose a favorite pair, and if it is a team tennis match, then choose a favorite team. If you find yourself in a situation where you can’t choose a player, then I recommend watching a few YouTube videos of the player rallying. See if anything about his style of play is interesting to you. If you do find something, watch that player closely during the match and see if you can pick up any patterns. Chances are you will.

Tennis is a sport of numbers. From the interesting scoring system, to the serve speed, to the seemingly random percentages the commentators throw out during the match, numbers are quite prevalent. If you enjoy statistics, then tennis is the sport for you. One of the cool things to focus on during the match is serve speed. See if the players manage to break the world record for fastest serve, which is 163 miles per hour, or 263 kilometers per hour. Or focus on the patterns that the players implement, such as the typical cross court shots to set up the down the line finish, or the serve and volley technique.

Tennis is a great sport and can be watched by anyone. It just takes a bit of effort to find the match, but once you do you’ll have a great time watching it. And if you’re unsure of how to watch the match, then just follow the tips that are in this article and enjoy the gentleman’s sport.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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Serena Williams Is Scrutinized More Than Any Other Tennis Player, And It Needs To Stop

Thank you, Serena Williams, for constantly fighting for women's equality on and off the court.


She's a mother. She's a fighter. She's the queen of the court. She's Serena Williams. She has redefined women's tennis and taken the world by storm with her grace, talent, resilience and power.

Recently, Williams faced criticism at the 2018 U.S. Open after she got into an argument with U.S. Open final umpire, Carlos Ramos. She accused the umpire of being a thief and a liar after she was penalized for coaching and smashing a racquet. Williams expressed her belief that the umpire was being sexist against her. She pointed out that male tennis players have said and done much worse than she has and have gotten away with it.

Many perceived Williams' reaction as inappropriate. A New York Post article even called her a "sore loser." However, Williams is far from a sore loser. She comforted her opponent and told the crowd to stop booing at Naomi Osaka. Williams' reaction to the umpire's ruling may have been extreme. However, it was a reaction that came from her heart because she is constantly being discriminated against.

According to Deadspin, Williams has been drug tested by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) more than any other tennis player in 2018. The website reports that she has been drug tested five times this year, which is more than double the number of times top American women tennis players were tested.

During the 2018 French Open, the tennis champion made her way on the court with a black "Wakanda-inspired catsuit." Williams saw her catsuit as a way to inspire women and children. However, according to The Independent, the President of the French Tennis Federation saw her catsuit as disrespectful.

Bernard Giudicelli told Tennis Magazine: "I believe we have sometimes gone too far. Serena's outfit this year, for example, would no longer be accepted. You have to respect the game and the place." Williams did not wear her catsuit just so that she can be bold; she wore it for health reasons.

The Independent reports that her catsuit helped her fight against blood clots. After she gave birth to her daughter, Olympia, Williams suffered from Hematoma, which is a collection of blood that swells outside of a vessel. Williams stated: "I almost died after giving birth to my daughter Olympia... I returned to surgery, where the doctors found a large hematoma, a swelling of clotted blood, in my abdomen. And then I returned to the operating room for a procedure that prevents clots from traveling to my lungs."

I cannot exactly pinpoint what is so disrespectful about Williams' attire, but what is disrespectful is for a man to dictate what a woman can and cannot wear on the court — especially since health plays such an important factor in why Williams wore her fierce catsuit.

In addition to being criticized for her outfits on the court, she has continuously been body-shamed by the media. Instead of praising her hard work, people tend to call her muscles "manly." Williams spoke with Harper's Bazaar UK Magazine where she discussed the constant body-shaming she has to deal with. She expressed: "It was hard for me... People would say I was born a guy, all because of my arms, or because I'm strong."

When a man has muscles, he is praised for his hard work and dedication. However, since Williams is a woman, she gets shamed for them. Williams' strength deserves praise, not name-calling or criticism.

Instead of focusing on the way her body is built, why not focus on her accomplishments? Why not focus on the 23 Major single titles or the four Olympic gold medals the tennis champion has won? Let's talk about her talent and achievements instead.

It is unfortunate that Williams has to stick up for herself so many times, but with the treatment she receives from the media, she is left with no other choice.

As former world number-one-ranked tennis player, Billie Jean King, put it in a Washington Post editorial:

"Women are treated differently in most arenas of life. This is especially true for women of color. And what played out on the court yesterday happens far too often. It happens in sports, in the office and in public service. Ultimately, a woman was penalized for standing up for herself. A woman faced down sexism, and the match went on."

In a moment where her integrity was tested, yet again, Williams was left with no other choice but to fight for herself. When Williams stands up for herself, she is not only doing it for respect, but she is doing it to set an example for her daughter and women of all ages. Williams' reaction was an example of a strong woman standing her ground.

Thank you, Serena Williams, for constantly fighting for women's equality on and off the court. You inspire and empower women each and every day.


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