Change and Continued Growth
Why Is Coaching Violations Still a Rule?
Communication, Communication, Communication
Character and Integrity
The Real Question
- Judging himself as unfit to give any penalty in that moment for verbal abuse, and
- Regaining the flow of game play (aka fairness to both players) by issuing a verbal warning to Serena in which he said, “I will have to give you a game penalty if you continue to verbally abuse me. Will both players please return to play.”
It’s Time for Change and Continued Growth
By not recusing himself in that moment of heated exchange with Serena, he inserted himself into the match inappropriately and caused an outcome that was different than if he had handled it differently. I definitely think Osaka would have won, and probably the resulting final score would have been the same. But by inserting himself the way he did, ultimately he stole something from Osaka: the unbridled pride and joy of winning her first grand slam title.
The US Open, WTA, and ATP need to take a long, hard look at this match and its impact on viewership and on the sport itself. It demonstrated in an ugly yet crystal clear way the need for changes to the code of conduct and the potential opportunity for retraining of umpires that better reflects the game’s growth into what it is today.