Serena Williams says in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine that, while not blaming the victim in the Steubenville rape case, “she shouldn’t have put herself in that position.”
The comment is made in one paragraph of a lengthy story posted online Tuesday about Williams, a 16-time Grand Slam title winner who is ranked No. 1 heading into Wimbledon, which starts next week.
Two players from the celebrated Steubenville, Ohio, high school football team were convicted in March of raping a drunken 16-year-old girl; one of the boys was ordered to serve an additional year for photographing the girl naked. The case gained widespread attention.
According to the Rolling Stone story, Williams says the perpetrators of the crime “did something stupid,” and she asks: “Do you think it was fair, what they got?”
She adds, “I’m not blaming the girl, but if you’re a 16-year-old and you’re drunk like that, your parents should teach you: Don’t take drinks from other people.”
And Williams also is quoted as saying: “... she shouldn’t have put herself in that position, unless they slipped her something, then that’s different.”
Venus Williamsto miss Wimbledon
WIMBLEDON, England — After 16 consecutive years of always showing up at Wimbledon, winning five titles along the way, Venus Williams pulled out of the grass-court Grand Slam tournament Tuesday, citing a lower back injury.
Williams, who turned 33 on Monday, never had missed Wimbledon since making her debut there in 1997, although she lost in the first round a year ago. She won the singles trophy — it happens to be called the Venus Rosewater Dish — in 2000-01, 2005 and 2007-08, to go with two more major championships at the U.S. Open in 2000-01.
But Williams has been dealing with a bad back, playing only three matches in the last two-plus months. She was clearly hampered by the injury during a three-set, loss to 40th-ranked Urszula Radwanska in the first round of the French Open. She and younger sister Serena withdrew from the doubles competition in Paris.
■ EASTBOURNE, England — American qualifier Jamie Hampton, ranked No. 41, upset top-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska 7-6 (2), 6-2 in the first round at Eastbourneon Tuesday.