ESPN Insinuates Drug Usage During Serena Williams Match

Remarks spark outrage and Change.org activism

Photo: ESPN

Photo: ESPN

ESPN commentators have inspired a Change.org petition after accusing tennis superstar Serena Williams of being under the influence of drugs during a Wimbledon match.

July 1 marked an event where Williams was set to play a doubles match with her sister, Venus, as reported by Business Insider. Visibly off her game, she had problems focusing on the tennis ball and appeared to be uncoordinated. She even had problems serving and grabbing the ball right off the ground.

With the game delayed for 13 minutes as the chair umpire expressed concern for Williams’s ability to perform, ESPN commentators Chris Evert and Pam Shriver offered their two cents. “This is not an illness,” Shriver insisted of Williams’s condition. “It’s almost like she has taken something that makes her feel dizzy, disoriented, and she cannot reach up and strike the ball.” Evert, cosigning his commentating cohort, asked, “Is it a virus? Is it something unintentional or intentional in her system that they may drug test for?”

Hearing those utterances outraged fans of the dynamic tennis duo who began a petition that called for an apology. To date, 1,263 people have signed thus far, and comments have ranged from wanting the ESPN twosome fired to urging for a sincere apology. “We decided to start this petition to ask Evert, Shriver and ESPN to apologize because the comments made against Serena Williams were not only speculative and distasteful, it was also disparaging, libelous, pejorative, malicious and slanderous,” the petition explains.

Williams, 32, has admitted that she is in a “difficult place” with her health. It is no secret that she suffers from pulmonary embolism, which is the blockage of an artery in the lungs, so suggesting that she would use drugs is a bit unwarranted.

Do you think Evert’s and Shriver’s comments were inappropriate? Speak on it below!

SOURCE: The Guardian

ACROSS THE WEB
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  • cheree’ smith

    wow, how unprofessional of the commentators. accusing anyone of drug use, without any hardcore proof…smh. im pretty sure neither of them are medical doctors.

  • sheri moore

    The “rush to judgement” by these ladies gives insight to what seems like preconceived notions on their part as regards to Serana Williams. They should , at the very least apologize publicly .

  • woody

    Totally inappropriate. Totally wrong. Totally mean spirited. They should be made to pay for this.

  • Kate Perry

    Google is paying 80$ per>>CLICK NEXT TAB FOR MORE INFO AND
    HELP

  • Not Surprised

    They are not the only ones who made assumptions and inappropriate statements. If it turns out they were wrong, many apologies are due. Let’s see how that goes.

  • Alphonso Dunbar

    AN EMOTIONAL TWIST CAN HAVE THE SAME EFFECT! STOP HATING! JUST BECAUSE SERENA HAS LONGEVITY DOES NOT MEAN SHE’S USING DRUGS!

  • Michell Gibbs

    You know that how its goes let try something to get her Out this is how they feel

  • Jaymani

    The comments made about Ms. Williams were extremely inappropriate, but I’m sure we all know why they were made anyway.

  • King

    If is was Sharapova they would say: “oh how sad, she appears to be very ill…we hope she can get threw this match, get home and get some chicken noodles soup”. But for Serena: “she’s must be on drugs”. It’s racism white supremacy virus that’s infected the planet…that’s the real illness here.

    • King

      *through

  • Maria D Jimenez

    Tennis world has come a long way and is shameful to see it go all out the door by some ignorant comments. As a commentator you have to guard your words carefully, the world is always watching and judging what you say and how you say it. Having said this, I truly believe an apology is in order by both commentators and ESPN

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  • Lee Scruggs

    This is more of the same type of behavior from Evert who along with Mary Jo Fernandez are part of the part of the racist faction of the tennis community in this country. Evert and Fernandez have also, in my opinion, are also jealous of Serena–especially since she has become part of the best-of-all-time discussion. I have said before that I will sad when Serena stops playing but happy that it’s racist supporters can watch their beloved sport crumble in the US because of non-relevance given that the Williams family has carried the sport here for more than a decade.

    • Lee Scruggs

      This is more of the same type of behavior from Evert who along with Mary Jo Fernandez are part of the part of the racist faction of the tennis community in this country. Evert and Fernandez, in my opinion, are also jealous of Serena–especially since she has become part of the best-of-all-time discussion. I have said before that I will be sad when Serena stops playing but happy that it’s racist supporters can watch their beloved sport crumble in the US because of non-relevance given that the Williams family has carried it here for more than a decade.

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  • Courtney Branch

    They all that make such irrational comments should be discipline. Quite outrageous to make such. But the point here is her race. Just Sharapova won the tennis championship in Australia, and the next day , she was awarded a commercial with AVON products. It’s estimated that more people of color buys Avon products. Did they ever given Serena a commercial? No. She is the No.1 player in the world. Has she given commercials ? No. WHY ?