After sparking sexism debate for giving Alize Cornet a code violation because the Frenchwoman temporarily took her Lotto Barre Top off during her first-round defeat against Sweden’s Johanna Larsson, the US Open apologized and changed their attire policy, which now reads:
All players can change their shirts when sitting in the player chair. This is not considered a Code Violation.
We regret that a Code Violation was assessed to Ms. Cornet yesterday. We have clarified the policy to ensure this will not happen moving forward. Fortunately, she was only assessed a warning with no further penalty or fine.
Female players, if they choose, may also change their shirts in a more private location close to the court, when available. They will not be assessed a bathroom break in this circumstance.
Cornet( info – @nicklester , @BenRothenberg,@ymanojkumar)(????Eurosport) pic.twitter.com/RlfQT3t77a
— doublefault28 (@doublefault28) August 28, 2018
What happened was that Cornet returned from her 10-minute heat break with the front of her fresh shirt facing backwards. When the world No.31 realized that, she quickly took it off to rotate it, exposing her sports bra for a few seconds. The US Open officials considered it unsportsmanlike conduct and gave her a code violation. The WTA community voiced their frustration with double standards.
Contrary to the headline claim, there is no indication of a “change” in policy. All the USTA statement did was say what the policy “is”: All players may change while sitting in their chair or off-court during a changeover.
They then express regret at Cornet having been given a code violation warning, despite the fact that her manner of changing was not in accord with the policy they just stated, i.e. she was not in her chair or off-court during a changeover.
It has also never been clarified whether she was given the warning for the shirt change itself, or for delaying the game and unsportsmanlike conduct for backing away and changing after time had been called and the server was ready to play, thus disrupting the server.
The whole situation was completely mishandled all the way around by everyone. And the USTA’s off-point statement just confuses the issue.
Dennis, insightful comment! You’re right, they apologized but that only confuses the situation since apparently Cornet was still not in concord with the policy, even this “new” one, as she took of her shirt on the court. But I can tell you that USTA’s press release was indeed entitled “US Open Statement on Change of Attire Policy”.
It was only a few years ago that Venus wore an outrageous outfit that looked as if she was not wearing underpants.
Who complained about that awful look?