Serena Williams has been fined a total of $17,000 by U.S. Open officials for three code violations during her loss in the U.S. Open final Saturday.
Williams was docked $10,000 for “verbal abuse” of chair umpire Carlos Ramos, $4,000 for being warned for coaching and $3,000 for smashing her racket. USTA spokesman Chris Widmaier said she could have been fined up to $20,000 for each offense for a total of $60,000.
The fine will be deducted from Williams’ $1.85-million second-place check and goes to the Grand Slam development fund.
The altercation that ultimately led to Williams being docked a game late in the second set began in the second game when Ramos issued the first code violation for coaching from the box, which Williams’ coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, admitted to ESPN that he did.
After gaining her only break of the match to lead Naomi Osaka 3-1 in the second, Williams smashed her racket after being broken in the fifth game and was assessed an automatic point deduction (giving Osaka a 15-0 start on her serve in the sixth game). That was a second code violation.
Williams continued to argue with Ramos and her dialogue escalated after she was broken again in the seventh game to trail 4-3.
She ended up calling Ramos a “thief” for taking away the point, and at that point, Ramos issued a third code violation for verbal abuse that cost her a game deduction. That handed the game to Osaka, who then led 5-3. Williams served the ninth game and held, but Osaka served out the match.
Ramos is one of the most experienced match officials in tennis and the only active chair umpire to have officiated the men’s singles finals at all four of the Grand Slam tournaments. He chaired the 2012 Olympic final between Andy Murray and Roger Federer.
Players such as Murray, Novak Djokovic, Venus Williams and Rafael Nadal have received code violations from Ramos. Murray got a verbal abuse violation in the 2012 Olympics after he muttered “stupid umpiring.”