THE UM­PIRE

STRIKES BACK

The Mercury - - METRO -

THE chair um­pire who pe­nalised Ser­ena Wil­liams in the US Open fi­nal has spo­ken pub­licly for the first time since the match, say­ing he is “fine”.

Car­los Ramos, who is from Por­tu­gal, spoke briefly to Por­tuguese news­pa­per Tri­buna Ex­presso this week.

“I’m fine, given the cir­cum­stances,” Ramos said, ac­cord­ing to the news­pa­per.

“It’s a del­i­cate sit­u­a­tion, but um­pir­ing ‘a la carte’ doesn’t ex­ist. Don’t worry about me.”

The news­pa­per said Ramos re­ceived hun­dreds of mes­sages of sup­port from fam­ily, col­leagues, play­ers and for­mer play­ers. He said he has avoided so­cial me­dia and only reads “bal­anced” ar­ti­cles about the in­ci­dent. He also re­frained from go­ing out the day af­ter the fi­nal to avoid prob­lems, ac­cord­ing to the re­port.

The In­ter­na­tional Ten­nis Fed­er­a­tion has de­fended Ramos for his ac­tions dur­ing the fi­nal. The US Open fined Wil­liams for her three code vi­o­la­tions.

The WTA later called for equal treat­ment of all ten­nis play­ers and coach­ing to be al­lowed across the sport.

Ramos has been as­signed to of­fi­ci­ate the Davis Cup semi­fi­nal matches be­tween the US and Croa­tia, a best-of-five se­ries which be­gins to­mor­row and ends on Sun­day in Zadar, Croa­tia. | AP

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