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Question Marks over Serena Williams

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posted on Sep, 10 2018 @ 11:46 PM
Part 1
Over the weekend, Serena Williams was relatively comfortably put to the sword by young rival Naomi Osaka in straight sets. Instead of celebrating the emergence of a bright young talent and possible superstar, the final was dragged out into a repulsive quagmire of detritus, through the fallout from a trio of circumstances that took place during the match. First, Ms Williams’ coach, Patrick Muoratoglou, was correctly penalised for coaching from the box, a rule that has been in place in grand slam tennis for a hundred years

Mr Muoratoglou verbally conceded post-match that he had indeed been coaching Serena and employed the flimsy argument that everybody does it. Does this mean that if you suspect everybody of using performance enhancing drugs, you should too? What is more concerning and perhaps reveals a glimpse through the coached veneer of Ms Williams character, was the fact that when a warning was issued to her because of this, Serena stated, “Don’t call me a cheat, I would rather lose than be a cheat”. Mr Mouratoglou as stated above admitted he was coaching her, and by extension, they did break the rules. However much responsibility lies with Ms Williams herself is indeed ambiguous, but she must take partial responsibility for the actions of her team. Many fanatical defenders of Serena would claim that this never happens to other players, but this is also untrue. Andy Murray, Boris Becker, Andre Agassi and even the mighty Steffi Graf have all received warnings over the years in grand slams for receiving coaching from the box. Mr Mouratglou’s argument is therefore defunct

The second warning came from Ms Williams smashing her racket into the ground after playing a terrible shot. The racket disintegrated with the force of the blow and Ms Williams received her second warning from the umpire. Even the most casual of fans have seen this offence punished on multiple occasions. Benoit Paire, Marcos Baghdatis, Novak Djokovic and Karolina Pliskova have regularly received warnings, fines and punishments for breaking rackets. Marat Safin the ill tempered Russian used to anecdotally bring five rackets to his matches in the anticipation that if things started to go badly, he would be breaking a few for sure. There is no excuse for the breaking of equipment and the abandonment of etiquette and Ms Williams racket smashing rightly drew a second warning and she was docked a point.

Part 2 to follow

posted on Sep, 10 2018 @ 11:47 PM
part 2 continued

The third and final controversial disciplinary measure resulted in Ms Williams receiving a third warning and Ms Osaka was awarded a game in the second set. This disciplinary action was for Ms Williams accusing the umpire of being a cheat and howling for an apology. Ms Williams called for the referee and the ruling was upheld. Serena launched into her own defence by accusing the umpire and referee of targeting her because she was a woman and that she was being punished for the nature of her sex. A quick glance down the record books of the last 30 years quickly disproves her argument. This sort of punitive action is not reserved for female players, and they are not more targeted and disciplined by umpires for this sort of behaviour than men. The most famous recipient of this sort of warning and punitive measure is John McEnroe. This very thing happened to the American no less than three times in grand slams. The notoriously volcanic left hander was constantly reprimanded for lambasting umpires and ironically calling them cheats. Serena argued that because she was woman, she was disciplined more harshly than if she was a man. Sorry Serena, you were disciplined for bringing the game into disrepute, slandering an umpire and acting like an impulsive child on the court. This is a person who is thirty five years of age and didn’t act like it.

Many upholders of Ms Williams’ virtue will argue that in other sports you can disparage the referee without repercussion. Soccer is the sport most frequently upheld as the example. A little research has yielded the actual truth. Verbal abuse to officials in five sports earns the following:
Rugby = Warning or expulsion from the game, at the discretion of the referee
Soccer = Warning or expulsion from the game, at the discretion of the referee
Golf = Warning or expulsion from the game, at the discretion of the referee
Snooker = Warning of expulsion from the game, at the discretion of the referee
Boxing = Warning of expulsion from the fight, at the discretion of the referee

Tennis is in line with many other sports. Yes, in soccer, there can be more vulgarity aimed at the referee, but the official has the ability to act as he sees fit. To be called a cheat in a grand slam final, in a match in which hundreds of millions of dollars would have been wagered, is a horrifying insult to an umpire. The truth is Serena knew that she had overstepped the mark and the tears flowed, her hesitation was palpable as she made her way to the baseline and one can’t help shake the feeling that she knew what was coming. The hard truth is, she got off likely and it would not surprise this writer is she is sued financially by the umpire if his career suffers from her defamation of his character when he acted correctly and within the rules. To defend her in this case is flippant and babyish.

Serena has comported herself with some decorum in her defence over the years, only occasionally the visage has slipped and allowed us to peer into the character beneath. She is clearly well coached in media protocol as are all top sports people. It is all very easy to do when you’re winning though. The second part of this piece focuses on her history with TUE exemptions, and by extension, is far more sinister. In 2016, Doctor Mark Bonnar released to the Sunday Times paper that he facilitated the use of performance enhancing drugs by some 150 athletes across a multitude of codes, tennis amongst them. He was the latest in a list of medical professionals who came forward and conceded that steroid abuse is rife but he would not disclose the names based on client confidentiality

part 3 to follow

posted on Sep, 10 2018 @ 11:49 PM
part 3

High profile journalist Paul Kimmage, famous for helping expose Lance Armstrong, has on multiple occasions been informed off the record of the rampant performance enhancing drug use at the highest levels of tennis. He has regularly alluded to this fact and even has a blog specifically dedicated to this paradigm, alongside his regular columns in various newspapers.

So what may you ask has this anything to do with Serena Williams? The first incident that occurred which tarnished Serena Williams reputation in this writers eyes, was when Serena Williams upon hearing that a WADA (World Anti Doping Agency) tester appeared at her residence in Las Vegas to check blood and urine. Despite repeatedly showing his credentials to the camera and stating his name and title, Ms Williams refused to acknowledge him and retreated to her panic room and awaited her management’s arrival. Allegedly she would not meet with any WADA official for a further three days. Allegedly her lawyers and management successfully made this event go away and it was blithely discounted by her allies in the press.

A much more damning leak occurred in 2016 on the eve of the Rio De Janeiro Olympic games. The whole Russian Olympic team was effectively banned as a number of their athletes tested positive for the substance Meldonium. Meldonium is a heart medication, but when used by athletes it can increase oxygen intake and blood flow. It came at a time of increased geopolitical tensions between the United States and Russia and some on the Russian side felt aggrieved. They then retaliated by hacking WADA and VADA and disclosing the names of American athletes who availed of the infamous TUE exemptions. If you are a professional athlete you can ask your doctor to prescribe you various drugs that are on the banned lists of the main anti-drug agencies. It has clearly been blatantly exploited by a number of athletes with the likes of famous 5000 and 10000 metre runner Mo Farah and a plethora of cyclists, some of the fittest people on earth, applying and receiving asthma medication. Unscrupulous doctors and athletes were fundamentally using a grey area in the legislation to effectively use performance enhancing drugs, unrestrained. The Russians railed at this hypocrisy and released the names. Amongst them were tennis players, specifically Serena Williams. It was disclosed that Ms Williams was availing of TUE exemptions for a decade both in competition and out of competition.

The powers that be elected to focus on the hack itself and the breach of confidential information, rather than hundreds of athletes being exposed for availing of legal performance enhancing drugs. The truth is Serena Williams would never have disclosed this until she was outed publicly. When you combine this with her panic room escapade, one has to concur with Paul Kimmage and co, that something stinks in the state of Denmark.

Four time grand slam winner and former Olympic champion, Andy Murray has publicly stated that drug testing is not conducted satisfactorily in tennis and he fully suspects some of his peers of availing of performance enhancing drugs. He is sceptical about the use of TUE exemptions also, accusing those who avail of them as predatory and hypocritical, and that includes Ms Williams.

Serena Williams is no paragon of virtue and never has been. What happened at the weekend isn’t new for her. When things don’t go her way she does not hold back in employing female discrimination or race to excuse her failings, which is of course exploitative and dispicable. When she is questioned by anybody she is petulant, arrogant and dismissive. What she did to Naomi Osaka was disgusting at the weekend. People have highlighted the fact that Ms Osaka has publicly defended Serena, but with 15,000 people booing the young player, it was clear that she had no choice. She was magnanimous in victory and the epitome of decorum. Ms Williams could have comported herself similarly but elected to throw the toys out of the pram.
In terms of Ms Williams’ TUE exemptions, it is hard to believe that some of the strongest and fittest athletes in the world are in such bad health that they require substances clearly stated on banned lists to compete. It may be legal under the ambiguous and opaque legislation controlled by western based sporting international institutions, but the fact is that she never disclosed it in years of competition until she was forced to by the sporting equivalent of Wikileaks. The incident with the panic room to avoid the tester was just plain ridiculous.
It must be noted that when her name was disclosed in the TUE scandal, this writer was instantly sceptical of her career and when you combine that with her sporadic tantrums and erratic behaviour, it’s hard to root for her. I much preferred her sister Venus, who never courted scandal and conducted herself as a champion despite only winning about a third as many titles.

posted on Sep, 11 2018 @ 03:10 AM
very well written and informative.

My opinion and taking all you have stated is this.

She screwed up and also threw a temper tantrum
She acted without giving a damn about the consequences .
the actions and words she MADE THE CHOICE TO DO was WRONG and she had to pay the price.

Instead of BEING AN ADULT and admit she screwed up along with apologies she went full stupid and doubled down on it.

She pulled out the full deck of cards from race, to sex to the most childish of all....WELL SO AND SO DID IT (be true or not) AND GOT AWAY WITH IT.

Once she did that I lost any respect or sympathy.

Ms Williams you SCREWED UP and broke multiple rules. Admit it, be sorry and go on with life.

Its called BEING AN ADULT.


posted on Sep, 11 2018 @ 07:05 AM
My opinion is that she hasn’t come to terms with what having a baby has done to her body. Hormone changes, muscle changes, etc., and that’s without the multiple surgeries she had after the delivery. There is probably a reason most female elite athletes haven’t had children.

And her “episode” was very reminiscent of ‘roid rage...

posted on Sep, 11 2018 @ 08:33 AM
a reply to: Warchief666

Serena argued that because she was woman, she was disciplined more harshly than if she was a man.

So- what was she playing against? 2 WOMEN were playing. If she was playing against a man, *maybe*.

Mehtinks she doth protesteth too much.

posted on Sep, 11 2018 @ 08:43 AM
No question mark about Serena. She's definitely hot.

posted on Sep, 11 2018 @ 11:00 AM

originally posted by: Lab4Us
My opinion is that she hasn’t come to terms with what having a baby has done to her body. Hormone changes, muscle changes, etc., and that’s without the multiple surgeries she had after the delivery. There is probably a reason most female elite athletes haven’t had children.

And her “episode” was very reminiscent of ‘roid rage...

I think she is doping. She is just to "manly" to not be.

posted on Sep, 12 2018 @ 10:45 AM
a reply to: Warchief666

Roid rage. Thats what happened (i bet). Maybe she could normally control it, but, getting up there in age and building a tolerance, she needed a higher dose. Or maybe something else off-court was bothering her, like a lovers spat or money/legal issues, but the roid rage was still the defining factor.

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