Serena Williams is still feeling the aftermath from her outburst at the US Open. She has just been fined by the Grand Slam Committee a record $82,500, and she is on probation for two years. If she has another outburst, she will be suspended.
Is all of this really necessary???
Serena Williams was fined a record $82,500 for her
U.S. Open tirade and she could be suspended from that tournament if she has another “major offense” at any Grand Slam in the next two years, Grand Slam administrator Bill Babcock told The Associated Press on Monday.
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 the previous highest fine for a Grand Slam offense was about $48,000 to Jeff Tarango in the 1990s.
Williams earned $350,000 by reaching the semifinals, part of her more than $6.5 million in prize money in 2009, a single-season record for women’s tennis. Her career prize money tops $28 million.
The American is an 11-time Grand Slam singles champion and ended the 2009 season at No. 1 in the WTA rankings.
Williams’ profanity-laced, finger-pointing outburst drew a $10,000 fine from the U.S. Tennis Association in September — the maximum on-site penalty a tennis player can face. But because it happened at a Grand Slam tournament, Babcock was charged with investigating whether further punishment was merited.
He concluded that Williams violated the “major offense” rule for “aggravated behavior.” The Grand Slam committee — with one representative from each of the sport’s four major championships — approved his decision Saturday.
Babcock said a “major offense” under Grand Slam rules is “any conduct that is determined to be the ‘major offense’ of ‘aggravated behavior’ or ‘conduct detrimental to the game.'” There is no specific definition of what sort of actions constitute a “major offense.”
He said the highest possible fine that Williams could face — $175,000, if she violates her Grand Slam probation — was chosen because it is the difference in winnings between reaching the quarterfinals and semifinals at the U.S. Open. The $10,000 Williams already was docked by the USTA will be counted toward that total; that’s why she is paying half of $165,000 now.
Even though his time has long passed, John McEnroe, the biggest a$$ in tennis history, never had a fine that big. Actually all his fines totaled up to $90,000.
This punishment is a bit much… What are your thoughts???