U.S. Open officials apologized to France’s Alize Cornet a day after issuing her a code violation for changing on the court.
After leaving the court on Tuesday for a 10-minute heat break, Cornet returned to start the third set against Sweden’s Johanna Larsson. But the former world-No. 11’s shirt was on backwards and when she changed on the baseline, the chair umpire issued her a warning.
The WTA, Billie Jean King and former Great Britain FedEx Cup captain Judy Murray issued statements calling the violation sexist.
King, who won four singles titles in New York, stated on Twitter that the rule was “outdated and impractical” while the WTA said it was “unfair” that men were able to sit shirtless courtside in the heat with no violation.
The temperatures were over 95 degrees with almost 50 percent humidity. On the court, it often felt worse – 105 degrees inside Bille Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y. with players changing between games and wearing ice bags around their necks.
U.S. Open officials apologized to Cornet and clarified the ruling Wednesday.
It wasn’t the first clothing-related controversy to hit the tennis world this week.
The president of the French Tennis Federation stated that the French Open would ban catsuits at future tournaments. Serena Williams wore a Black Panther inspired in Paris this spring that helped the 23-time Grand Slam winner with preventing blood clots.
King also spoke out in defense of Williams, who reached the Wimbledon finals less than a year after giving birth to her daughter, saying that “the policing of women’s bodies must end.”
Williams will play on Arthur Ashe Stadium tonight, this time in a black tutu, while Cornet’s tournament ended with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 loss.
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