Remember that tirade Serena Williams got busted for at the U.S. Open? You know, the one where she disagreed with the line judge and said, “I swear to God, I’m f—-ing going to take this f—-ing ball and shove it down your f——ing throat, you hear that? I swear to God.”
Well, Williams, who is, after all, a Jehovah’s Witness, got what was coming to her: A record $82,500 fine and probation.
Grand Slam administrator Bill Babcock’s ruling was released Monday, and he said Williams faces a “probationary period” at tennis’ four major championships in 2010 and 2011. If she has another “major offense” at a Grand Slam tournament in that time, the fine would increase to $175,000 and she would be barred from the following U.S. Open.
“But if she does not have another offense in the next two years, the suspension is lifted,” Babcock said in a telephone interview from London.
He said Williams is handing over $82,500 right now to the Grand Slam committee, already far more than the previous highest fine for a Grand Slam offense. In 1995, Jeff Tarango stormed off the court at Wimbledon and accused the chair umpire of showing favoritism to certain players in exchange for their friendship. Tarango was fined a total of $43,756, which was reduced to $28,256 on appeal, and barred from Wimbledon the next year.
Williams’ tirade also raised an interesting question about what Jehovah’s Witnesses and other religious folks think about cussing. More here.
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