Tennis Legend Billie Jean King Backs Serena Williams

While tennis star Serena Williams was accused of having a “meltdown” at the U.S. Open on Saturday for clashing with an umpire, tennis legend Billie Jean King praised Williams for not taking her penalties lying down. “When a woman is emotional, she’s ‘hysterical’ and she’s penalized for it. When a man does the same, he’s ‘outspoken’ & and there are no repercussions,” King tweeted late Saturday. The world’s former No. 1 tennis player thanked Williams for “calling out this double standard” and said that “more voices are needed to do the same.” Williams lost the U.S. Open to Naomi Osaka and was reportedly hit with a $17,000 fine for three different code violations that she blamed on sexism by the umpire. The umpire who issued the penalties, Carlos Ramos, called out Williams for allegedly getting coaching signals, breaking her racket, and calling him a thief when he deducted one of her points. Williams defended herself after the match, saying male tennis players do far worse on the court and don’t get penalized for it. “He’s never taken a game from a man because they said ‘thief,’” she said.