Wimbledon: Serena Williams calls security into question as chaotic scenes follow victory
SERENA Williams complained she was “mobbed” and questioned the standards of Wimbledon security after winning on Court Two for the second time in this tournament.
The 4,000-capacity court is stationed well away from the main hub of the venue, at the southernmost tip of the grounds, with those playing on it having to walk through spectators to get to and from the locker rooms. That is the norm away from Centre and Court One, but for Serena, a four-time champion and one of the most recognisable players on tour, her walk can be more chaotic than others experience.
It proved to be the case yesterday as fans crowded the American after a 6-1, 2-6, 7-5 fourth-round victory over Yaroslava Shvedova, with the sixth seed claiming she was nearly knocked to the ground in the process. Although she is happy to receive the adulation of the public, Williams sounded a note of caution about the safety of players who are scheduled to play on Court Two.
“I was totally mobbed,” she said. “Literally, I thought I was going to fall down today after the match. You know, I guess that comes with the territory. It was crazy out there today.”
When asked if Wimbledon officials should take security issues into consideration when planning matches, she added: “Yeah, I think they should take that into account. There were tons of security guards in there just going nuts and screaming.”
Williams did make light of the matter, though, claiming she would be able to handle anyone that tried to knock her off her feet, referencing her occasionally volatile temperament.
“Nobody is going to knock me over for real,” she said. “I’d like to see that happen. You guys know how I can get. Maybe that’s why I got on Court Two, because they knew I could back myself up.”
Yesterday’s win, which set up a quarter-final tie with Petra Kvitova, was another appearance on the court she is known to be no great fan of, prompting questions about whether she has been victimised by officials. She would not be drawn, though, only saying: “I don’t talk about that.”
A Wimbledon statement regarding Williams’ claims read: “The safety of the players and spectators is of paramount importance and we take any concerns very seriously.”
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