Serena Williams has a history of controversy. Most of it stems from her competitive drive getting a little out of control on the court. Some people applaud her fierceness while others think she goes too far. But her latest snafu is beyond ridiculous. Serena lost in the third round in the French Open to fellow American Sofia Kenin. This loss was shocking not only because of the relative obscurity of Kenin, but because it happened in the third round. Serena hadn’t lost that early in a major in five years. Having lost a match that most people assumed was an automatic win in straight sets, Serena was understandably upset. But the way she handled it was unacceptable.
Serena was scheduled to do her post match interview after Dominic Thiem, who is the four seed for this tournament and had just beat Gael Monfils in straight sets. Rather than wait for Thiem’s interview to finish, Serena demanded that her interview happen now. So, French Open officials cut off Thiem’s interview and moved him to a smaller room so that Serena could have the main podium.
This was absolutely ridiculous on Serena’s part. I know she’s upset about the loss and if I were here, I’d be livid. But at the end of the day, it’s just a game. Serena can’t win every tournament, and when she inevitably loses sometimes, she needs to handle it better. This was a completely classless move that only further shows what a diva Serena is. It also puts the French Open officials in a tough spot. They certainly can’t deny Serena’s request because her interview is great for ratings, especially after such a shocking loss. However, moving Thiem certainly wasn’t the right thing to do. French Open officials have since apologized to him. But Thiem said it best, when he said that whether it’s him interviewing or a junior player, Serena needs to wait her turn. And I 100% agree. While I get letting emotions get the best of you, this was a time when Serena went way overboard.
-Stephen Brown III (@sbtrey23)