Umpires reportedly considering boycott of Serena Williams matches

Tennis umpires are reportedly threatening to boycott Serena Williams’ matches over the fallout from her US Open finals altercation with Carlos Ramos.

An anonymous source told The Times of London that there is a growing consensus among umpires that they were “not supported” by the U.S. Tennis Association on several occasions and that Ramos is being unfairly criticized.

Retired umpire Richard Ings told ESPN on Tuesday that umpires feel that Ramos is being vilified.

However, Ings also added that a boycott is ultimately unlikely given that officials don’t have any sort of fraternal organization or union that would help coordinate such a protest.

Williams, who lost the final to Naomi Osaka on Saturday, received warnings from Ramos for coaching and breaking a racket before being docked a game for calling the umpire a “thief.” After the tournament was over, the six-time US Open champion was fined $17,000 for her actions during the match.

In the wake of the controversy, both the USTA and the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) backed Williams. WTA CEO Steve Simon called for changes in officiating, saying that “there should be no difference in the standards of tolerance provided to the emotions expressed by men vs. women.”

The International Tennis Federation supported Ramos in a statement released Monday, saying that his decisions were “in accordance with the relevant rules and were re-affirmed by the US Open’s decision to fine Serena Williams for the three offenses.”

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