• Sports - Tennis - Gossips
  • Updated: May 29, 2023

French Open: Stephens Laments About Racist Abuse

Former US Open champion Sloane Stephens has lamented about tennis players being subjected to racist abuse, saying it is getting "worse."

Stephens spoke to the issue after beating Karolina Pliskova in straight-sets in the French Open first round on Monday. 

"It's been a problem my entire career," American Stephens said in Paris.

"It has never stopped. If anything, it's only gotten worse.

"I mean, obviously when there is FBI investigations going on with what people are saying to you online, it's very serious.

"Obviously it's been something that I have dealt with my whole career.

"I think that, like I said, it's only continued to get worse, and people online have the free rein to say and do whatever they want behind fake pages, which is obviously very troublesome."

Although racism has become alarming in recent weeks, the French Open is the first of the four Grand Slams to introduce an artificial intelligence protection software that is able to identify and remove racist and other forms of hate speech. 

The French Tennis Federation CEO Caroline Flaissier claims the organisers have made it available to all players at the tournament because players' mental health is a "priority for Roland Garros."

The software is designed to filter out abusive comments on social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and TikTok.

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