NEW YORK. – American tennis star Serena Williams was in no mood to joke about the possibility of another coaching row following comments from Patrick Mouratoglou.
Williams has warned her coach Patrick Mouratoglou to not even think about trying to coach her in the US Open final today.
Twelve months ago, in the final against Naomi Osaka, Mouratoglou made a gesture to Williams which was seen by umpire Carlos Ramos.
The official gave Williams a code violation which was the catalyst for the American to challenge and argue with the Portuguese umpire.
Williams would then smash her racket which led to a point penalty and when she continued to berate Ramos, she was deducted a game.
Osaka would eventually beat Williams and a year later the memories from the incident are still raw.
On Sunday, Mouratoglou was asked to talk about what happened and in a lengthy answer, he insisted he’d do it again.
“Do I regret? No, I felt like she was lost at that moment and I tried to help her doing something that everybody does that is the use of the tennis,” he said.
“I would do the same tomorrow. Really. 100%. And if I’m penalized again, I think it’s unfair the same way. If I’m penalized, then everyone should be penalized every day.
“And nobody is. Nobody. Once every -you know how it is.
“I’m okay to be penalized if I did something really bad that is not — when you smash the racquet, you always have a warning. This is really the rule and the use.
“So this is something nobody complains about because we know that — I think it’s the most stupid rule. I don’t think we should get penalized for that. That’s how it is.
“This is fine. But when you never, and nobody is penalized or almost never, I don’t think it’s fair.
“So do I regret? No. Would I do it again tomorrow if it’s necessary? Yes.”
But speaking after beating Elina Svitolina to reach her tenth final at Flushing Meadows, Williams was asked for her reaction to Mouratoglou’s comments.
And the 37-year-old was unequivocal in her desire for it not to happen.
She told the media: “Yeah, no, he knows better than to say that to me. I think he was just playing with you guys.
“That’s not, like, an option for me.”
Williams will face Canada’s Bianca Andreescu in the final after she defeated No. 5 seed Elina Svitolina to set up a repeat of the Rogers Cup final – The Daily Express.