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Serena Lashes Out at Indian Wells Boss for Sexist Comment

Serena hit back at director Raymond Moore, who claimed women’s tennis was riding on the coattails of the men’s game.

Updated
Sports
2 min read
Serena Williams stands with tournament director Raymond Moore after Victoria Azarenka, defeated Williams in the final of the BNP Paribas Open. (Photo: AP)

World number one Serena Williams ripped offensive remarks by Indian Wells tournament director Raymond Moore, who claimed women’s tennis was riding on the coattails of the men’s game.

“If I was a lady player, I’d go down every night on my knees and thank God that Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal were born, because they have carried this sport,” Moore, a 69-year-old former player from South Africa told reporters at his annual state of the tournament press conference on Sunday morning.

Not surprisingly, 21-time Grand Slam champion Williams was scathing in her response.

Obviously, I don’t think any woman should be down on their knees thanking anybody like that. If I could tell you every day how many people say they don’t watch tennis unless they’re watching myself or my sister, I couldn’t even bring up that number. So I don’t think that is a very accurate statement. I think there is a lot of women out there who are very exciting to watch. I think there are a lot of men out there who are exciting to watch. I think it definitely goes both ways. I think those remarks are very much mistaken and very, very, very inaccurate.
Serena Williams

Williams said she quickly became aware of Moore’s remarks on social media, even though she was busy on Sunday morning preparing to meet Victoria Azarenka in the women’s final which the Belarusian won in straight sets.

A swift backlash had Moore issuing an apology even before the men’s Masters final between Novak Djokovic and Milos Raonic was completed.

At my morning breakfast with the media, I made comments about the WTA that were in extremely poor taste and erroneous. I am truly sorry for those remarks, and apologize to all the players and WTA as a whole. We had a women’s final today that reflects the strength of the players, especially Serena and Victoria, and the entire WTA. Again, I am truly sorry for my remarks.
Raymond Moore

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