“Comments From That Guy?”: Serena Williams on Skipping Mutua Madrid Open 2021 Due to Ion Tiriac’s Harsh Remarks

Published 05/11/2021, 4:00 AM EDT
Serena Williams of the United States looks on prior to her Women’s Singles fourth round match against Petra Martic of Croatia on day seven of the 2019 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 01, 2019 in Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)


Serena Williams has had a bitter past with former Romanian tennis player Ion Tiriac. Tiriac is also the President of the Romanian Tennis Federation and the owner of the Mutua Madrid Open 2021. Some fans even claimed that the tennis queen didn’t participate in the Madrid Open this year because of the harsh remarks that he made on her recently.

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In a recent interview, Serena Williams was asked why didn’t she take part in the Mutua Madrid Open 2021 and if it was because of Tiriac. Serena didn’t give a clear response and laughed at the end of the question.

“Comments from that guy? The old, old guy (Ion Tiriac), yeah! I don’t know. Like he still… hmm,” said Williams.

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It was as if the 23-time Grand Slam champion held herself back from commenting on Tiriac. Serena was going through a dental problem at the time of the Madrid Open. However, Tiriac’s comments on her could be another reason why she decided to skip the Mutua Madrid Open 2021.

Ion Tiriac’s recent war of words with Serena Williams and her husband

In an earlier statement, Ion Tiriac had stated that Serena Williams should retire, citing her age and weight as reasons. This wasn’t the first time the Romanian businessman had criticized Serena; he had made similar comments about her age and weight back in 2018.

LEXINGTON, KENTUCKY – AUGUST 14: Serena Williams serves during her match against Shelby Rogers during Top Seed Open – Day 5 at the Top Seed Tennis Club on August 14, 2020, in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

In response, Serena Williams’ husband Alexis Ohanian took a dig at Tiriac and claimed that even his and Serena’s 3-year-old daughter Olympia had more Grand Slam victories than Tiriac. The atmosphere got a little intense, and even the fans must not have liked Tiriac’s statements.

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After skipping Madrid, Serena Williams will kick off her clay-court campaign at the Italian Open 2021 soon. She has got a tough draw and will most likely face Naomi Osaka in the quarter-finals. Will Serena be able to conquer Rome for the fifth time this year?

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Anshul Singh

957 articles

Anshul Singh is a tennis author at EssentiallySports, currently pursuing Journalism Honors from Delhi University. Having significant experience with content, Anshul has authored over 500 tennis articles. He has previously worked as a writer and an editor for DU Express, penning riveting articles on sports, politics, and culture.

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