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Carlos Ramos (umpire)

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Carlos Ramos
"Sorry, wrong number." (19509842541).jpg
Born Carlos Ramos
Lisbon, Portugal
Nationality Portuguese
Occupation Gold Badge ITF Chair Umpire
Years active 1991–present

Carlos Ramos (born 1971)[1] is a Portuguese tennis umpire.[2] Ramos, a gold badge chair umpire certified by the International Tennis Federation,[3] is the only person to have chair umpired a singles finals match in all four of the Grand Slam tournaments.[2] Ramos is also notable for umpiring many other high-profile matches and for penalizing several high-profile players during his decades-long career.[4][2]

Career

Ramos' Wimbledon finals debut as chair umpire came at the 2007 Wimbledon Championships – Men's singles final between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.[2] In 2008 he chair umpired the match in which Venus Williams defeated her sister Serena Williams at the 2008 Wimbledon Championships – Women's Singles. In 2012 he chair umpired the London Olympics final between Andy Murray and Roger Federer,[5] making Ramos the only umpire to have chair umpired a singles final at all four Grand Slam tournaments and the Olympics.[2][6] He has also officiated a number of matches in the Davis cup.[7]

A highly experienced umpire,[7][6] Ramos developed a reputation for strict adherence to rules, to the point of being described as a "stickler".[4][5] According to tennis experts, Ramos is one of the few umpires who isn't afraid to call a rules violation against elite players.[1]

Controversies

Ramos has issued violations to several high-profile tennis players who then objected to Ramos' penalties.[4]

2016 French Open

During the 2016 French Open, Ramos issued a code violation to Nick Kyrgios after the latter shouted at a ball boy about a towel during a match.[4][8] Kyrgios continued to clash with Ramos after the violation was issued, stating later that Ramos was operating on a double standard since Kyrgios claimed his opponent (Marco Cecchinato) was also committing violation-worthy offenses.[8]

2016 Summer Olympics

At the 2016 Summer Olympics Ramos issued a code violation to Andy Murray after Murray criticized Ramos' "stupid umpiring".[9][4]

2017 French Open

During the 2017 French Open, Andy Murray received two time violations from Ramos, the second of which was a loss of first serve.[10] Murray noted that he indeed had been in violation of the controversial time rule and described Ramos as a "very good umpire", but he criticized the penalty.[10] Ramos also gave Novak Djokovic a loss of first serve after Djokovic committed multiple time violations. Djokovic then yelled to himself in Serbian and flipped a tennis ball at a ball boy behind him, leading to Ramos penalizing him for unsportsmanlike conduct.[11]

2018 US Open

At the 2018 US Open women's singles final between Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka, Ramos gave Williams three code violations. Williams' first code violation was a warning for receiving coaching during the match (Williams' coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, later admitted to coaching using hand signals, though he noted the rule against such signals was not always enforced).[12][1] Williams contested this, stating her coach had only given her a thumbs-up and reassuring Ramos that she never gets coaching or cheats. Later in the match, Williams intentionally broke her racket against the ground, incurring a second code violation from Ramos, which was a point penalty. Williams continued to argue with Ramos between games, first asking and then demanding he apologize for implying she was cheating by getting coaching, and then telling him, "You stole a point from me".[13] Willams then told Ramos: "You will never, ever, ever be on another [tennis] court of mine as long as you live ... You owe me an apology. Say it. Say you’re sorry . . . How dare you insinuate that I was cheating. You stole a point from me. You're a thief, too.".[13] This exchange resulted in Ramos issuing Williams a third code violation for verbally abusing the umpire, which awarded the game to Osaka.[13] Play was then stopped, and Williams called the tournament referee and supervisor onto the court, but the two officials upheld Ramos' violations. Williams went on to lose the match to Osaka 6-2 6-4.[13]

Williams was fined $17,000 for the violations.[14] After the match Williams accused Ramos of sexism by claiming that men were not penalized in the same manner for the same conduct she was accused of. While Williams' claim was backed by the WTA and Billie Jean King,[15] Williams' claim was criticized, often harshly, by the US Open (which issued the $17,000 fine), the ITF, Martina Navratilova, and the majority of professional players and authorities. Some professionals have criticized both Ramos and Williams during that match. Some suggested that Ramos could have been more sensitive to Williams by overlooking the coaching signal and attempting to calm her down with a soft warning for umpire abuse before applying the game penalty. Others noted that Williams as a player should have been experienced enough not to lose control of her emotions as she was well aware of the potential for a third violation, and there was also criticism that Williams was acting like a diva "bigger than her sport".[16][17][18][19][20] The International Tennis Federation (ITF) supported Ramos, stating his "decisions were in accordance" with the Grand Slam Rulebook Code of Conduct which players agree to adhere to - specifically Article III: Rule P of the Grand Slam Rulebook which forbids players from making a verbal remark towards an official that "implies dishonesty", such as "liar" and "thief".[21][22]

References

  1. ^ a b c "Serena Williams accuses US Open chair umpire Carlos Ramos of sexism". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Portuguese umpires prominent once more at Wimbledon". Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  3. ^ "Wayback Machine" (PDF). 2011-06-29. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "Umpire Carlos Ramos has history of being stickler for violations". Larry Brown Sports. 2018-09-08. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  5. ^ a b Lutz, Tom (2018-09-09). "It's not just Serena: how umpire Carlos Ramos has clashed with players". the Guardian. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  6. ^ a b "Carlos Ramos, Umpire Known for Rigidity, Lands in U.S. Open Firestorm". Retrieved 2018-09-10. 
  7. ^ a b "Serena Williams Is Fined in Dispute With Chair Umpire". Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  8. ^ a b Mitchell, Kevin (2016-05-22). "Nick Kyrgios through in straight sets after umpire altercation at French Open". the Guardian. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  9. ^ "Andy Murray shrugs off 'stupid' row to reach Rio tennis final". Mail Online. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  10. ^ a b "Murray 'fired up' by 'strange' time violation". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  11. ^ "All so difficult for Djokovic, easy for Nadal at French Open". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  12. ^ "Patrick Mouratoglou: 'I was coaching' Serena during match". New York Post. 2018-09-08. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  13. ^ a b c d "Naomi Osaka upsets Serena Williams, who received game penalty, to win 2018 U.S. Open". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-09-09. 
  14. ^ Lam, Katherine (9 September 2018). "Serena Williams fined $17,000 for violations during US Open final". Fox News. Retrieved 9 September 2018. 
  15. ^ "ITA backs umpire Carlos Ramos as WTA sides with Williams". Retrieved 19 September 2018. 
  16. ^ "Carlos Ramos was correct—and a consummate professional at the US Open". Retrieved 19 September 2018. 
  17. ^ Mitchell, Kevin (10 September 2018). "Serena Williams's meltdown is a sign that tennis lies at a crossroads - Kevin Mitchell". the Guardian. Retrieved 19 September 2018. 
  18. ^ "US Open finals tell vastly different tales of comfort and chaos". Retrieved 19 September 2018. 
  19. ^ Lutz, Tom (9 September 2018). "It's not just Serena: how umpire Carlos Ramos has clashed with players". the Guardian. Retrieved 19 September 2018. 
  20. ^ "Tennis pros debate who was worse: Serena Williams or umpire Carlos Ramos". 10 September 2018. Retrieved 19 September 2018. 
  21. ^ "ITF says umpire Carlos Ramos showed 'integrity' in US Open final". The Guardian. 10 September 2018. Retrieved 2018-09-10. 
  22. ^ "2018 Official Grand Slam Rulebook" (PDF). ITF. p. 46. Retrieved 2018-09-10.