Elisabeth Brier -Huff Post Black Voices
Serena Williams has become synonymous with the game of tennis, so why does the legendary athlete have fewer sponsorship deals than some of her competitors?
As fellow tennis champ Andy Roddick pointed out in a recent interview, Williams is a “complete icon” and “the best female athlete of all time,” but when it comes to media coverage, it’s been largely unfair. “[I] was a jerk a lot of the time, and [I] didn’t get a quarter of the criticism that she ever got,” he admitted.
Roddick’s observation was consistent with HuffPost Live’s discussion on Wednesday, where Kathy Kudravi, a producer for the American Sports Network, attempted to explain the negativity surrounding Williams in the media.
“When you have a woman who is strong, and powerful and dominant the way Serena is, there are some of those in the media who don’t know how to approach that … they want a pretty little blonde girl who meets the expectation of sex appeal,” she said.
George Henry, William’s former coach, added to that, explaining that “tennis is not a predominately black sport,” and thus Williams wasn’t “welcome[d] into the game when we were introduced to it.”