In Serena, women should learn to stand up against bullies

Serena Williams confronts chair umpire Carlos Ramos during the U.S. Open final that she ultimately lost to Naomi Osaka

The No1-ranked female tennis player has dominated sport columns in the last week after she unleashed a scathing tirade on umpire Carlos Ramos during her loss to Naomi Osaka. After the tournament was over, the six-time US Open champion was fined $17,000 for her actions during the match.

Williams was handed a code violation for coaching early in the second set when Patrick Mouratoglou appeared to make hand signals to the 23-time Grand Slam champion from the player's box.

"I didn't know Ramos was sitting in the chair".

Williams accused Ramos of sexism during the US Open final in NY, branding him a "thief" and a "liar" after he issued her with a series of code violations.

"She said, like, she was proud of me and that I should know that the crowd weren't booing at me", Osaka told The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

"If a woman was refereeing another woman then she can go: "Oh, I can understand maybe how she is feeling". "I don't think I'm a mix of three whatever, I just think I am me". Calling Ramos a "thief" and a "liar" explicitly violates that rule, and Ramos let Williams vent for quite some time before finally imposing the penalty.

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Writing in The New York Times, Navratilova - the American 18-time grand slam victor - felt that Williams had some point in her argument with the officials, but that her behaviour was inexcusable, and something which was a bad look for those watching on.

Now on a "six-figure" salary with Adidas that will expire this year, the 20-year-old Japanese-Haitian athlete is reportedly signing a contract with the apparel label worth an estimated $8.5 million a year.

It has been suggested the umpire penalised Serena not for her misdemeanour in the court, but because he could not take such kind of dress-down from a woman.

I hate to sound whiny, but Serena's incident, whether you think she is a sore loser or not, should bring us to think about how we treat women who are not conventionally "ladylike".

Osaka had thrust herself into the limelight earlier in the year with a stunning victory over Daria Kasatkina in the final at Indian Wells claiming her first WTA title.

Beyond her unprecedented success in tennis, Serena has also come out strongly as a women's rights activist. Probably the greatest tennis player of her generation, she has been an inspiration to young girls and athletes around the world.

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