Serena Williams Responds to French Open Catsuit Ban With a Tutu
Serena Williams has been at the center of quite a scandal this past week. Bernard Guidicelli, the president of the French Tennis Federation, made a statement that catsuits would be banned from the tournament. Williams wore a catsuit at the 2018 tournament as a preventative measure against blood clots after she had a pulmonary embolism after giving birth.
"One must respect the game and the place," Guidicelli said in his statement.
The internet immediately went wild and criticized the French Open for the new policy that clearly targeted Williams. Even famed tennis superstar Billie Jean King came to Williams' defense:
The policing of women’s bodies must end. The “respect” that’s needed is for the exceptional talent @serenawilliams brings to the game. Criticizing what she wears to work is where the true disrespect lies. https://t.co/ioyP9VTCxM
— Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) August 25, 2018
One Twitter user pointed out that Anne White wore a catsuit in 1985, and no one seemed to have a problem with it until Serena wore one:
Anne White wore a catsuit in 1985.
Serena Williams is not allowed to wear one in 2019. pic.twitter.com/maSMckXo26
— Simon Hedlin (@simonhedlin) August 25, 2018
Nike stood behind the tennis star, as well.
— Nike (@Nike) August 25, 2018
As a result of this catsuit controversy, we've all been waiting to see how Williams would respond to the French Open.
In a press conference, the tennis star tried to find humor in the situation, and responded with pure grace:
— ESPN (@espn) August 25, 2018
But it was her most recent court outfit that got everyone's attention. At the first round of the U.S. Open, she sported a custom-designed tutu by Louis Vuitton designer Virgil Abloh and Nike.
"It's easy to play in," Williams said in a news conference after the match. "Kind of aerodynamic with the one arm free. It feels really good. Yeah, the tutu is easy to play in because I practiced in it before. That was fun."
Even better? She won the match.
Many responded that the tutu was the perfect response to the catsuit ban, and further solidified Williams' reputation as a true competitor.
We'll see if the French Open responds to the backlash in any way. In the meantime, our promotional apparel suppliers and distributors might want to further investigate the athletic tutu. If Serena says it's worthy of your attention, you'd better listen.