Today on CNN Newsroom

The latest news and information from around the world. Also connect with CNN through social media. We want to hear from you.
September 13th, 2009
10:56 AM ET

Serena Williams "Goes Off" On The Court

U.S. tennis superstar Serena Williams loses her cool in a profanity-laced tirade after a judge’s call. Her behavior appears to have caused her to lose the semi-final match against Belgium’s Kim Clijsters.

Do you think Serena’s actions should have cost her the game?

Post by: ,
Filed under: Fredricka Whitfield
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. Brad

    It did cost her the game, but it didn't cost her the match. Kim Clijsters was obviously going to win at that point, having outplayed Serena pretty heavily.

    September 13, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  2. Dee

    I am disappointed that the outcome of a match would be decided by a sideline judge, but Serena never dominated the match and the ultimate outcome just happened sooner. Clijsters' played a great match and no one can take that from her. We all have bad moments in life we wish we could take back and do over. I'm sure she has reflected on her behavior since this happened. She has to get herself together to play the doubles final tomorrow. I wish Serena & Venus good luck in the doubles final!!

    September 13, 2009 at 11:10 am |
  3. ken

    Serena displayed poor sportsmanship, and should be fined or suspended. I believe she is part owner of the miami dolphins. I wonder if she will run out on the football field and yell at the officials is she disagrees with a call. It is pretty bad when Mcenroe said she went over the top.

    September 13, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  4. Sidney

    I noticed that Gonzalas threw his racket but nothing said. However, Serena was going to lose that match anyway. The lines person was wrong, but she is the law and she made a judgement call, like the umpire calling balls and strikes. Turn the other sheek and play better next time.

    September 13, 2009 at 11:34 am |
  5. Darrell

    I think you should all look at some of the comments submitted on YouTube's video posts of the fiasco. It's pretty obvious that Serena allowed her frustration to get the best of her, but I'm troubled by the venom spewed out on these YouTube video post. Somehow, this 'blow-up' has swirled into an issue about race. What does Serena being black have to do with her getting angry?

    It is so sad. I thought we were moving forward. Anytime a dominate, high profile black athlete goes berserk, it is somehow attributed to their race. That is so sad. Lets not make this more than it is. Serena was angered by the judges call and she over-expressed her frustration.

    September 13, 2009 at 11:51 am |
  6. harrisnajib

    What a horrible show of sportsmanship by Serena! Her grim rant at the linesman was epic. She deserve this lose. On the other hand, Kim Clijsters showed what a well-composed player she is.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:25 pm |
  7. Robert East

    I watched the match and did not think she commited the fault for which she was penalized. That stated, there was no excuse for her outburst. I hope she had the dignity to congratulate her opponent for her solid play. She needs to apology to the tournament, to the many young players who idolize her, then atone for her mistake.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  8. Mike Armstrong TX.

    Looks like she was having a prozac moment she just needs a little anger management im shure that Jack Nicoelson can help her. better luck next year .

    September 13, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  9. harry

    I find it funny that people are complaining about Serena. I came up during the time of McEnroe and Connors and what she did wouldn't have caused a stir compared to either of them. I hope it's not a color thing.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  10. andrea

    I'm a little shocked the match ended in default, I guess the rules have changed a lot since John Mc enroe's days.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  11. Tina L. Fletcher

    I believe that many critics are basing their statements simply on the 2 minute clip that is being shown repeatedly. For those of us who've watched Serena's matches over the past years know that she has had to overcome so much adversity to make it to her current place. And as a tennis player, there are multiple issues -on top of line misjudgments that occur every match to both players – that cause tennis players to become very upset.

    I think that her actions are being blown out of proportion by her critics. Until you've seen what she's been through and actually heard her explanation of the event, you should not judge her. More importantly, most viewers don't even know what was really said!!!

    September 13, 2009 at 2:30 pm |
  12. Clement

    I beleive Serena reacted but there was an action before, any time action took place there will be a reaction.
    The action which creates that reaction cause her the game. However I understand what some expexted from her but remember sports in General are very emotional.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  13. Jerome

    In the past John Mcenroe was tolerated and accepted for outburst worst than what Serena did during this match. It appears that there is a double standard between ether men and women or black and white. I guess we shouldn’t be surprised that is status quo for the United States, racism is woven deeply into our culture. It’s a shame that a country that was founded on quotes like “All men are created equal…” continue to exhibit double standards on a daily basis.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:36 pm |
  14. Don

    Serena has displayed nothing but class and has been a good role model over the years. It was a bad call that would have angered anyone. She is human and reacted like anyone else would have. Give her a break, most people have more daily outbusrt than we have seen out of her in her entire career.

    September 13, 2009 at 2:37 pm |
  15. MIKE

    The game, the set and the match was clearly Kim Clijsters'. That is precisely the reason why she was so angry that she had already received a warning for racket abuse.

    I was expecting this behaviour a long time ago; she's always playing on anger and that can be seen in her body language during any match.

    Recently, when she was interviewed by Pam Shriver on her way out to the court, she answered so coldly Pam's questions that Pam asked her "is that it?". There is something in her life that keeps her being like that. If that is the case, she must get over it.

    People don't like what you did, Serena. Grow up!

    September 13, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  16. Sharon,Daniel Island, South Carolina

    going off may have been extreme, but it turns out the call was a bad one

    September 13, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  17. Derrick Lewis

    Who does not lose there cool once in a while. I think the lean on most of our people is the exception sense we have a lot going on in the world enforcement is an issue everywhere people want to show authority everywhere you go in the United States.

    She is playing in the big leagues now and she has to consider professionalism is a must!

    September 13, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  18. Nicholas

    Apparntly the line judge had a problem understanding her. The judge seemed to have a problem understanding english, as well as with her eyesight. They should have had a younger, better judge, with better eyesight at such a high-level event. Then it was the semi-finals on top of that. It seems like the organization was negligent in not putting their best judges in the tournament. Serena was frustrated, that's a part of the game. Serena shouldn't have been penalized. The organization seems to be extra hard on the Williams Sisters. McEnroe did it all the time, all the time, and even worst than Serena.

    September 13, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  19. Mark

    I teach my little league football team to “NEVER LEAVE ANYTHING TO CHANCE… or an official. Life is not fair, so you have to work hard and prepare!” This is why we run up the score in the first half, regardless of what the opposing parents believe or say. “You get out of life what you put into it. You reap what you sow. And, most importantly, you’ll never please everybody.” Serena, Venus and have not been focussed all year, and sometimes it takes a situation like this to help motivate…

    Serena plays with “Passion” not “Anger” just like great John McEnroe.
    People are not perfect, both the official and Serena were wrong. Those speculating must have issues of their own. Stick to the facts supported by empirical evidence. She apologized, congratulated her opponent and has moved on.

    So should we.

    Keep representing the USA Venus & Serena because we don’t have another female tennis player in the top 50.

    September 13, 2009 at 9:50 pm |
  20. Nacilbuper

    She and Kanye should get together.

    What class our African American leaders and idols are showing us.

    But should any of us be surprised. I seem to remember when Bill Cosby told the African American community that they needed to be RESPONSIBLE and he was booted so fast your head would spin.

    Wake UP.

    September 14, 2009 at 5:54 am |
  21. Marc Lerner

    What this racist did was unconscionable . On a major stage to speak to anyone that way is unbelievable. Mary Carillo is spot on. The usta must step up with a major fine and big time suspension. And I mean a MAjOR suspension(Austalian).
    I hope the USTA has the integrity to do right thing not succomb to Nike or Wilson

    September 14, 2009 at 11:49 am |
  22. Craig

    It should cost her the season. I'm tired of listening to the antics of so-called "professional" athletes who think they can shoot any kind of profanity out of their mouths at anyone. There should be no place for childish, irresponsible behavior like this in any public venue.

    Craig from Omaha

    September 14, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  23. Olicia

    I don't think it was right for her to get that uspet but you never know what's going on in someones life this game was also the day before the anniversy of her sisters death so you have no idea what kind of emotional stress she's under

    September 15, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  24. Bamboo

    I think she had a right to do so. I mean sometimes those judges can be way off base with their calls and that judge was certainly one of them. Not so much with the whole profanity thing but she did have the rigth to be mad.

    September 18, 2009 at 11:07 am |
  25. eddie

    Concerning Joe Wilson, the question is not; are 'we' getting out of control. This man suppose to be one of our LEADERS. This man suppose to serve as an example to America. Now, if he is not openly rebuked for disrespecting the President of the United States of America, others will do the same thing!

    September 19, 2009 at 1:02 pm |