Meet SHAMIL TARPISCHEV!!!
SHAMIL TARPISCHEV is the current president of the RUSSINA TENNIS FEDERATION, and has been fined $25,000 by the WOMEN'S TENNIS ASSOCIATION (WTA) and suspended from tour involvement for a year for questioning the gender of SERENA and VENUS WILLIAMS on a Russian TV show.
ESPN reports last week, SHAMIL TARPISCHEV appeared on the Russian late-night show "Evening Urgant" alongside former RUSSIAN WTA player ELENA DEMENTIEVA.
When ELENA DEMENTIEVA was asked what it was like to play against the Williams sisters, TARPISCHEV in and referred to them as the "Williams BROTHERS," according to multiple reports.
DEMENTIEVA did not laugh at the comment.
TARPISCHEV reportedly continued;
"It's frightening when you look at them. But really you just need to play against the ball."
The WTA Tour said Friday that the $25,000 fine is the maximum allowed under tour rules and that it is seeking Tarpischev's removal as chairman of the Kremlin Cup for one year. The tour also said Tarpischev owes the Williams sisters a personal apology.
WTA CEO and Chair STACEY ALLASTER said;
"The statements made by Shamil Tarpischev on Russian television with respect to two of the greatest athletes in the history of women's tennis are insulting, demeaning and have absolutely no place in our sport. Mr. Tarpischev's statements questioning their genders tarnish our great game and two of our champions. His derogatory remarks deserve to be condemned and he will be sanctioned.''
UNITED STATES TENNIS ASSOCIATION (USTA) President and Chair DAVE HAGGERTY said;
"As the president of the Russian Tennis Federation and a member of the International Olympic Committee, Mr. Tarpischev is expected to conduct himself with the highest degree of integrity and sportsmanship. Unfortunately, his comments do not embody either of these traits and in fact were reprehensible.''
TENNIS Legend MARTINA NAVRATILOVA said;
"Flippant or not, you cannot have an official making this kind of an offhand remark. I think it's disgraceful, and there should be a serious sanction. This cannot be tolerated."