A controversial cartoon which shows Serena Williams as an angry, black baby and Naomi Osaka as a blonde, white woman has appeared in an Australian newspaper

Serena Williams, US Open umpire

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Serena Williams.

  • Serena Williams is shown as an angry black baby in a cartoon published by Australian newspaper The Herald Sun.
  • The cartoon also shows Naomi Osaka, a dark-skinned Japanese woman, as a white blonde.
  • The cartoon is a controversial depiction of how Williams lost her cool in Saturday's US Open final against Osaka, who won in straight sets.
  • She was slapped with a hat-trick of code violations.
  • You can see the cartoon below.


Serena Williams has been portrayed as an angry, overweight black baby in a cartoon in Australian newspaper The Herald Sun two days after the 23-time Grand Slam tennis champion lost her cool in a dramatic US Open final.

Williams was given three code violations during her straight sets loss to Naomi Osaka on Saturday.

The first violation was for coaching, which Williams argued against. "I don't cheat to win. I'd rather lose," she said.

Williams was then given another violation for smashing her racket, costing her a point.

She then demanded an apology from the umpire, Carlos Ramos. Speaking to the referee to protest Ramos' call, she argued that male players aren't punished for similar, or worse, actions. "Because I'm a woman, you're going to take this away from me?" she said.

Williams was fined a total of $17,000, which is deducted from her prize money of $1.85 million as the tournament's runner-up, according to Associated Press.

In response, The Herald Sun's editorial cartoonist Mark Knight lampooned Williams in his latest piece.

In the controversial cartoon, Williams is shown with grotesque features including an oversized nose and lips, and is pictured jumping up and down with a broken racket and a pacifier, likely insinuating that Williams acted like a baby having a temper tamptrum during the final.

The portroyal of Osaka is equally controversial, as the 20-year-old, one of the rising stars in women's tennis, is a dark-skinned Japanese woman, but is pictured in the cartoon as a white blonde.

Here is the cartoon:

The US Open women's final polarised opinion

While Osaka beat Williams in straight sets (6-2, 6-4), headlines did not focus on the 20-year-old's first ever major win, instead fixating on Williams' hat-trick of code violations.

The decision to reprimand Williams polarised the tennis industry and wider sporting press. Ben Rothenberg, a freelance journalist for the New York Times, claimed on Twitter that all sanctions were fair.

Meanwhile, former women's world number one player Billie Jean King said the decision to punish Williams is an example of the double standards at play in tennis.

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