Wimbledon Rumors: New Accusation of Fixed Matches Between Serena, Venus Williams? [VIDEO]
Wimbledon got what it wanted to kick off its second week of play on the women's side when Serena and Venus Williams advanced and will meet in the fourth round.
But Jason Whitlock, substitution host of "Pardon the Interruption" on ESPN, believes that the outcome of the match will be what their father wants, after all these years.
Whitlock said he thought Williams was going to lose her third-round match against Heather Watson, in which Williams rallied in the third set to advance 6-2, 4-6, 7-5 and gave her credit for digging deep to pull out the win.
But then he entered into a stance that hasn't been mentioned regarding the Williams sisters for quite some time - that their father Richard was going to dictate the outcome of the match.
When asked whether he thought Serena would have a better shot of winning Wimbledon, thanks to her close shave, Whitlock replied:
"... Plus, she's playing her sister next; I think Richard will make the call on that," Whitlock said. "She'll get a cakewalk into the next round."
He then talked about what Richard might be telling Venus about the situation.
"We've got a calendar Grand Slam on the line, Whitlock said. "Let's get Serena through this, rested and ready for the next match."
USA TODAY Sports' For the Win accused Whitlock of sheer stupidity for his remarks.
"In a disrespectful, abhorrent and ignorant statement made on Friday's edition of PTI, Jason Whitlock, subbing in for Michael Wilbon, made the offhand remark that Monday's fourth-round Wimbledon match between Venus and Serena Williams would be determined by their father Richard, leading to Serena winning in "a cakewalk." If Whitlock was joking, he gave absolutely no indication of it, speaking with complete seriousness and continuing his misguided thoughts without pause."
It reported that the 35-year-old Venus and 33-year-old Serena are grown women who won't be influenced by what their father says.
Serena ended a 14-year hiatus from the tournament at Indian Wells this year after she was booed during her 2001 finals match there against Kim Clijsters because Venus had pulled out of her semifinals match against Serena just a few minutes before they were scheduled to start because of an injury.
Many fans believed, as did Elena Dementieva, that the outcome had been staged for the Williams' semifinal.
But even For the Win wasn't certain as to whether the outcomes in - or withdraws from - matches involving Serena and Venus were stage.
"Whether the rumors were ever true or not, only the Williams know."
After her match Friday, Serena sounded very cautions in commenting on Venus.
"She's playing so well," Serena said. "I'm practicing next to her every day, and I'm in awe of how she's doing and it's a little frustrating because it's like I know I have to play her and I just don't know how I'm going to do, to be honest."
Do you now or did you ever think the outcomes of matches between Serena and Venus Williams were staged? Comment below or tell us @SportsWN.