Young black tennis player told by U.S. tennis association she is too fat to compete.
Amity Paye | 9/11/2012, 3:17 p.m.
16-year-old Taylor Townsend won the Australian Open earlier this year and the toubles tournament at the Austrailian open with teammate Gabrielle Andrews. She also won the Wimbledon Championships this year. But when she requested to participate the U.S. Open Junior Tournament, her own country, as a wildcard in the main draw at Flushing Meadows the U.S. Tennis Association denied her travel funding to compete.
Espn reported that Townsend said, "I was actually very upset. I cried. I was actually devastated," Townsend said. "I mean, I worked really hard, you know."
Although the U.S. Tennis association's website says it is "is the national governing body for the sport of tennis and the recognized leader in promoting and developing the sport's growth on every level in the United States" And in an interview with ESPN, U.S. Tennis Association General Manager, Patrick McEnroe said, "It has nothing to do with weight, nothing to do with body type...it has to do with overall fitness, overall what her game is."
The day after winning the U.S. Open Serena Williams told ESPN in a separate interview, "If that happened(to Townsend), that's obviously a tragedy, because everyone deserves to play."
Williams added, "for a female, particularly, in the United States, in particular, and African-American, to have to deal with that is unnecessary. ... Women athletes come in all different sizes and shapes and colors and everything."
For more on this story: espn.go.com