Martin Devlin: Why I don't believe Serena's kindness

Author
Martin Devlin,
Section
Audio,
Publish Date
Sunday, 20 January 2019, 1:41PM
United States' Serena Williams, left, consoles Ukraine's Dayana Yastremska after winning their third round match at the Australian Open tennis championships. (Photo / AP)

Serena Williams – I don’t believe you.

It’s not that I don’t think that you were genuine with your wonderful humanitarian gesture against Dayana Yastremska, the young Ukrainian who was in tears at the end of the match against you.

It’s that I also know you are an expert at this PR game.

You employ a world of image consultants. You knew as soon as that opportunity rose what the potential PR consequences of it were.

I’m not saying that affected the way that you behaved, as you probably would have comforted her anyone. Like you would any opponent you had just walloped 6-2,-6 -1.

If Serena Williams had lost that match, would she be looking in the eyes of the young one and saying ‘You’re whole career’s in front of you, I love you’.

We saw the real you in your match against Naomi Osaka at the US Open

That is Serena Williams. I’m sure this side of Serena Williams is another side of her.

But this whole idea that you’re the world saviour of fluffy animals and humanitarian causes around all the world, when last year you were just such a sulky, petulant, bad tempered, bad mannered, bad sportsperson-like towards Naomi And stole that life changing moment of her.

And now we have to swallow all of that and you’re the champion of women’s rights, children’s right, working women going back to work, feminism, sexism, hate-all-men-ism.

I’m the enemy. Guess what? It’s no great surprise or secret. I’m white. I’m a man! Ah look down, I’ve got a penis. Chop it off! I have a job, I work hard and pay taxes, so I tick all the wrong boxes, don’t I?

I’m not moaning about it because for years and years and years people like me ruled the planet, but I just get a bit bored with this.

Which one are you Serena? I love you playing tennis, and that’s the only thing I’m interested in.

Serena is untouchable. You’re not allowed to say anything bad about Serena otherwise you’re all of those things I just labelled myself

Simple as this: Serena, as far as your tennis goes, I have nothing but admiration. As far as you as a person goes, I’ll leave it to you as an audience to make your own assumption

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