Serena Williams Had the Best Response to Being Told She Should 'Get on Her Knees' and Be Thankful

March 21st 2016

Laura Donovan

Wimbledon champion Serena Williams just slammed Indian Wells Tennis Garden CEO Raymond Moore for saying anyone who is a "lady player" should get on her knees and be thankful for male tennis players "because they have carried this sport."

The Indian Wells Tennis Garden is hosting the BNP Paribas Open in Coachella Valley, Calif. this year, and Moore reportedly made these controversial comments mere hours before Williams competed in the tennis finals.

Serena Williams

Speaking to reporters at a media breakfast before the men's final, Moore claimed that women in the Women's Tennis Association "ride on the coattails of the men."

"You know, in my next life, when I come back, I want to be someone in the WTA because they ride on the coattails of the men," Moore said over the weekend, according to multiple outlets. "They don't make any decisions, and they are lucky. They are very, very lucky. If I was a lady player, I'd go down every night on my knees and thank God that [famous tennis players] Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal were born because they have carried this sport. They really have."

Serena Williams responded to Raymond Moore's comments.

Williams fully condemned Moore's "offensive" remarks about female tennis players, according to ESPN and New York Times reporter Ben Rothenberg.

"Obviously, I don't think any woman should be down on their knees thanking anybody like that. I think Venus [Williams], myself, a number of players have been -- if I could tell you every day how many people say they don't watch tennis unless they're watching myself or my sister, I couldn't even bring up that number. So I don't think that is a very accurate statement. I think there is a lot of women out there who are more ... are very exciting to watch. I think there are a lot of men out there who are exciting to watch. I think it definitely goes both ways. I think those remarks are very much mistaken and very, very, very inaccurate."

When asked if Moore's comments may have been misinterpreted, Williams said, "You know, there's only one way to interpret that. Get on your knees, which is offensive enough, and thank a man, which is not -- we, as women, have come a long way. We shouldn't have to drop to our knees at any point."

Serena Williams

Williams also pointed out the fact that the female U.S. Open sold out faster than the men's in 2015.

"I'm sorry, did Roger [Federer] play in that final or Rafa [Nadal] or any man play in that final that was sold out before the men's final?" she said. "I think not."

Moore apologized for his remarks and commented on the "strength" of Williams and fellow tennis player Victoria Azarenka, but the damage was already done.

Many blasted him on social media over his comments:

This is not the first time Williams has faced unfair treatment as a female tennis player.

Last year, retired tennis player Andy Roddick told the Observer that he has been friends with Williams since childhood and watched her receive more flak than he ever did for bad behavior on the court. During his career, Roddick was known for his short-temper during games. In 2011, he received a point penalty for hitting a ball into the stands. Earlier in the game, he got a warning for throwing his racquet.

"[Williams and I] threw lots of fits on the court," he told the publication. "I was a dick a lot of the time, and I didn’t get a quarter of the criticism that she ever got."

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