Oct/18

2

Serena Turned Osaka’s Dream Come True Into A Nighmare

NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ
By Scoop Malinowski

US Open champion Naomi Osaka is still bothered by the fact that the highlight moment of her career – winning the US Open – was destroyed by the inner ugly and horrid sportsmanship of Serena Williams.

“I mean, of course I’m happy that I won a Grand Slam,” Osaka told reporters in a press conference on Monday. “I don’t think there’s anything that can take away from that. But I don’t know. I feel like not that when I look back on it that it’s a bad memory, but I feel like it was so strange, I didn’t just want to think about it. I wanted to just push it to the side. Then I played Tokyo. For me, Tokyo was a way to take my mind off of it. I think that’s why I did well. I’m still trying to take my mind off of it a little bit. I guess hopefully I can do well here, too.”

Can you believe it? Osaka is actually trying to take her mind off the crowning, highlight, most joyous moment of her career, or what should have been.

Serena Williams completely destroyed Osaka’s magical moment and here we are weeks later and Osaka is still distraught and disgusted by Serena’s awful behavior of smashing a racquet, bullying Carlos Ramos and denying she was being coached even though her coach confessed on ESPN he was indeed coaching from the box, which is illegal.

And to add to the insanity, the US Open crowd cheered and supported Serena that day. Serena should have been booed off the court, like Martina Hingis was in her Roland Garros final vs Steffi Graf. What did Hingis do wrong? She questioned a call and decided to leave the trophy ceremony, upset by the bad call and the way the Chatrier stadium crowd treated her for disputing the call, which, in her mind, caused her to lose the match she had been winning by a set and a break.

Serena’s behavior at the US Open final this year was far, far worse than what Hingis did in Paris – and the New York crowd cheered and supported her. What an upside down world we live in when Serena’s obscenely ugly behavior is cheered and supported. And the 20 year old winner of the US Open still can’t fully enjoy and savor her history making triumph against the greatest player of all time.

Serena Williams has a lot to be ashamed about. And some, including Osaka and many other players,
probably wish Serena will stay in hiding for the rest of 2018 and well beyond.

Because who the hell wants to see Serena Williams on a tennis court ever again? If she behaves again, or worse, than that horrifying, disgusting display she put on at the 2018 US Open final.

It’s a mockery of judgement and justice that Williams has still not summoned the class or decency to apologize to Osaka and the entire sport for her disgusting behavior at the US Open final.

Until Serena gets the sense to do the right thing, this debacle of an episode will be remembered as a major part of her legacy as a tennis player. How she managed to turn an opponent’s dream come true moment into a nightmare.

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23 comments

  • Chazz · October 2, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    What an awful crowd as well comments by Serena. Rewatch this if you want to cringe:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCm3BemDlj8

    Osaka will play in many more US Opens, but she probably doesn’t want to after this experience.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 2, 2018 at 8:19 pm

    Kat Adams no, Serena is the most wretched hideous horrible ogre in tennis history. To ruin Osaka’s moment was the worst thing I ever saw in tennis besides Seles being stabbed.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 2, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    Serena should retire and go to Hollywood and make horror films.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 2, 2018 at 8:23 pm

    This monster made this kid apologize for winning the US Open.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 2, 2018 at 8:24 pm

    Watching your video Chazz of the award ceremony and it’s unbearable. Serena should retire and get out of the sport. She is beyond disgusting.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 2, 2018 at 8:25 pm

    This ceremony and match was “beauty and the beast.”

  • Dan Markowitz · October 2, 2018 at 10:04 pm

    Osaka is trying to put the Open final out of her memory and you should do same thing. Look many of us agree Serena was out of line, but Serena as Reggie Jackson said about himself, is still the straw that serves the drink. Serena is still the most compelling player—by far— that the WTA has going for it. The WTA is in danger of losing even more of it credibility. Nicely, Osaka and Sabalenka have come to the fore, but Serena still commands the most eyeballs and her story is still the best one out there for the women. It’d be nice if she apologize for her boorish behavior at the Open, but we’re in the dent, deny, deny era sadly.

  • catherine · October 3, 2018 at 3:09 am

    The best thing for Naomi would be for her to have some good results now in Beijing and Singapore and for reporters to stop asking her about the US Open.

    The next best thing would be for Serena to retire but that isn’t going to happen since she seems committed to playing through 2019. Her presence in the game is coming to resemble Tiger Wood’s in golf – as long as he’s around all the attention is on him. Luckily the Ryder Cup proved Tiger is dispensable. Also Naomi will most likely have a better time in Australia and Europe where Serena doesn’t have the same fanatical following. And the stadiums are not, as Phil Brooks described so aptly, ‘cauldrons’ where toxic emotions can seethe and swirl around.

    On a happier note – GB will host a round-robin stage of the Fed Cup for the first time in 25 years next February at Bath University, nice location in the West Country. It’ll be a small indoor stadium so even modest crowds should provide a good atmosphere.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 3, 2018 at 7:04 am

    Osaka’s got to stop acting like a little girl. Get over Serena acting boorish at the Open and move on. I hope Serena crunches her the next time out. Look, Serena is the main act on the WTA. You’ve got your European women who aren’t too compelling in my eys: Halep, Kerber, The Woz, Murguruza and Kvitova and you’ve got some US presence in Sloane and Keys and now what’s really good is young guns like Osaka and Sabalenka coming to the fore and playing exciting tennis, but Serena’s still the show and she showed at the Open she’s still capable miraculously at 36 and with child, of playing amazing tennis. That’s what I look forward to seeing in 2019 above all else on the WTA.

  • catherine · October 3, 2018 at 8:03 am

    It’s not Naomi who won’t move on – it’s the reporters who keep asking her about the USO. And as for hoping Serena crunches her next time – what kind of person are you ? I haven’t heard anyone say anything like that anywhere, even rabid Serena fans.

    Who cares what you think about the WTA ? It’s just what interests you and nothing else. We’ve heard it 100 times before. Your tune never changes.

    Serena’s 37 now and she’s not playing amazing tennis by the way. She lost at W’don and she lost at the USO. That’s not amazing tennis. She had easy draws in both events.

    I would’ve thought you’d be the first person who’d want new names in the women’s game so you can stop despising it – but no, you’ll cling to a player who is at the end of her career and can’t control her temper. She won’t be the main act much longer – get used to it or stop watching or talking about women’s tennis.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 3, 2018 at 12:26 pm

    Dan, it’s up to Serena to do the right thing and apologize to Osaka and the sport and everyone for her beastly behavior at the US Open. The sport is still suffering from an open wound created by Serena, Osaka is still clearly suffering from the experience, she is not at peace about it and probably never will be. Serena is a monster. Not sure if any words of apology can undo what she did to poor Osaka’s what should have been grand moment. The best move may be to retire from the sport and be the best mother she can be – and not a mommie dearest reincarnate.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 3, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    Catherine, the reporters should ask Osaka about what happened. It’s still a huge story. It was the ugliest moment in Grand Slam tennis history and poor Osaka is still somewhat traumatized by it. Which is absolutely disgusting and appalling. I am very upset by the fact she is still suffering from the trauma Serena’s horrid behavior has damaged her. This could be permanent damage to Osaka, she made her dream come true and it became a nightmare. She may lose the fraction of desire to win, she may not want to ever beat Serena again and just defer to that diva monster. It bothers me to no end to have seen Osaka crying at the award ceremony. Only a monster could have caused such a nightmare situation. It’s sickening that Serena has been given a pass on it by most of the media and even the fans who were there. What an outrageous injustice to this young sweet girl Naomi Osaka who did nothing wrong but play the match of her life.

  • Hartt · October 3, 2018 at 12:57 pm

    I can’t believe that the discussion about Serena at the USO is still continuing. That happened weeks ago.

    Like many people I was appalled by Serena’s behaviour and thought Naomi showed amazing composure during the match and in the days following it. But I don’t think Naomi will be traumatized forever by it. The fact that she made the final of Tokyo, where she was under huge pressure as the hometown favourite, shows she is a tough competitor.

    I’d vowed that I wouldn’t post anything more about Serena and Naomi, but had to say that surely it is time to move on!

    Between Tokyo for the men and Beijing for both the men and the women, there is a lot of tennis happening right now to talk about.

  • catherine · October 3, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    Well, obviously Scoop I agree with you that it was an awful experience for Naomi who has been brought up in the Japanese way to have respect for others and expect certain standards of behaviour from her elders.

    However, she’s only 20 and at that age bad memories can fade quickly when other better memories take their place and that’s how I hope things will work out for Naomi. And I trust, through the luck of future draws, that she never has to play Serena again.

  • catherine · October 3, 2018 at 1:15 pm

    Hartt – I agree with you too, and was pleased to see Shapo win and Domi bt Stephens – for the way she toughed it out, nothing to do with Sloane’s mini tantrum v Pavs 🙂

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 3, 2018 at 1:27 pm

    Hartt, it’s newsworthy still because Osaka revealed this week at her press conference in China that she is still bothered by the experience and tries not to think about it. That’s called being traumatized. Osaka has still not recovered. Tokyo was easier for her because Serena was not there. She could mentally fall apart the next time she has to play Serena in the US. This should not happen.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 3, 2018 at 1:29 pm

    Catherine, Seles was only about 20 she she was stabbed in Hamburg and who knows if she ever fully recovered and who knows, this dreadful nightmare could also have a long term lingering effect on Osaka. Hope not but the fact she is expressing that she still is suffering from the US Open final experience, is troubling.

  • Hartt · October 3, 2018 at 3:19 pm

    Yes, it is sad to hear Naomi talk about her memory of the USO as “bittersweet”, something she doesn’t want to think about a lot. But she is already focused on the tourneys she is playing now.

    “For me, I’m really focused on playing the Asian swing. Yeah, for me the biggest goal right now is trying to get into Singapore.” (WTA site)

    And she is focused on the talented players of her generation, the ones she will be competing with for many years.

    “For me personally, I think everyone is super great around my age. I remember when Ostapenko won the French Open, I thought it was super amazing. I couldn’t comprehend how she did it. I thought the mental strength that you have to have to do that is amazing.

    “And, yeah, I am, Kasatkina, Belinda, Sabalenka and everybody, they are all really great. I think when I see them doing well and winning matches, I want to do well, too.” (WTA site)

  • Dan Markowitz · October 3, 2018 at 3:31 pm

    Catherine,

    I’m tired of your attacks on me regarding the WTA players. I have my views as you have yours, the diffference is I don’t castigate you personally because of your views like you continue to do. I don’t think Serena’s a monster and she’s earned the right to continue playing as long as she likes especially if she’s reaching slam finals. I have applauded the play of Osaka and Sabalenka, but for me personally, Serena’s the player who still intrigued me most.

    I’m going to the site’s webmaster about suspending from posting for a month unless I receive an apology from you. You can attack a poster’s opinion on tennis on this site, but you cannot attack a poster.

  • catherine · October 3, 2018 at 9:45 pm

    Dan

    I did not attack you personally in anything I posted in this thread. I took exception to your apparent wish that Serena ‘crunch’ Osaka when they played next. I thought it was an unjustified comment and I stand by that.

    I have never called Serena a monster. I don’t use language like that.

    As for suspending me for my supposed personal attacks on you otherwise, I wonder if you have read other comments on this site where individuals have threatened each other with bodily harm ? Or some posters who have expressed extreme political views. I haven’t seen suspensions handed out to them.

    I’m not sure what I’m supposed to apologize for. I’ve objected to the dismissive way in which you often refer to women’s tennis but that doesn’t amount to a personal attack. I’ve attacked your views and the way you have expressed them in the past, but that’s not the same as attacking you personally – I don’t know you.

    I can promise that I’ll never respond to any of your comments on this site again – I’ll do that. You can go ahead and suspend me if you like but I’d also want to hear from Scoop as well since he’s the administrator I understand. And if you do suspend me then you can be quite sure I will not return.

  • Scoop Malinowski · October 3, 2018 at 10:30 pm

    Catherine is a valuable and cherished member of the tennis-prose.com family and she has never caused trouble, she is one of the best contributors to the site. She was justifiably offended about the hope Serena crunches Osaka next time they play, that makes no sense to say that. Osaka is an innocent victim of one of the most despicable episodes in US Open and Grand Slam history. She is still suffering from it too. Like how Kei Nishikori said he couldn’t sleep for weeks after he was verbally abused and humiliated by Roddick in San Jose after he hit the ball right at Andy at the net. Fortunately Kei overcame that verbal bullying abuse and hopefully Osaka will too. Most of all let’s hope Serena never lets out her inner beast mode like that ever again on any official or player or anyone because it gave tennis a “bad look” as Courier said about Sandgren’s tweets, though what Serena did was far far worse.

  • Dan Markowitz · October 3, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    Catherine,

    When you make a comment like, “Who cares what you think about the WTA ? It’s just what interests you and nothing else. We’ve heard it 100 times before. Your tune never changes;” I take offense.

    I have my views. I do not always criticize women’s tennis. I like Osaka and Sabalenka. These are two players who have come to the fore recently so they’ve changed my mind somewhat on women’s tennis.

    When someone makes a comment you don’t like–particularly me–you lash out and I’m tired of this act of yours. I did not mean to say “crunch,” I typed too quick. I meant to say I hope Serena crushes Osaka the next time they play.

    Who are you to tell Serena she should hang it up so the young women players should get to move to the top? They’ll get to the top by beating Serena the way Osaka did. Serena doesn’t have to make it easier for them by retiring.

    You can ignore my comments deriding the women’s game if you don’t like them. I do the same about most of your comments regarding Kerber and Halep and the other players you fancy who for the most part, I’m not too interested in. But I don’t lash out at you and I’d expect the same courtesy.

  • catherine · October 4, 2018 at 1:43 am

    Dan

    Here are my last words on this topic then. Surely, as people who comment on the game, we’re permitted to express opinions about players. That’s what these sites are here for. Plenty of followers and writers have suggested Serena retire. I’m not saying that. I’m just expressing my view that this might be an option. It’s unlikely she’ll take any notice.

    If you’ve changed your mind about the game then that’s fine. But I still don’t understand why you hope Serena crushes Naomi next time they play.

    I’m not aware that I ‘lash out’ at other posters on this site, with one exception, and that was a response to something said to me. I avoid that now.

    I’m not a lashing out kind of person. Maybe because I come from a different background there are misunderstandings when it comes to writing. Sometimes I say things which are not meant to be taken entirely seriously. It’s an English characteristic. It’s not an act.

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