Tennis fans have expressed their anger and frustration on social media after Serena Williams' clash with Emma Raducanu at the Cincinnati Masters was rescheduled from Monday to Tuesday.
Williams and Raducanu were originally scheduled to play on Monday (local time) in a battle between a 23-time grand slam champion and reigning US Open winner.
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Williams is playing in Cincinnati for the final time in her storied career after she announced last week that she will retire after the US Open starting later this month.
Fans were therefore keen to watch Williams play in person in Cincinnati, with many snapping up tickets for Monday to see her clash with Raducanu.
But there has been widespread backlash on social media after organisers announced that Williams and Raducanu's match has been pushed back to Tuesday.
A spokesperson for the tournament said the change was "on account of a number of factors related to scheduling."
Several angry ticket-holders claimed the scheduling change was “false advertisement” and accused organisers of a ploy to sell out both Monday and Tuesday evening sessions.
“This is so disappointing,” one person wrote on social media. “After spending HUNDREDS of dollars watching Serena, the schedule gets changed the night before?
"Been coming to watch Serena Williams play in Cincinnati since the mid 2000’s. Watching the GOAT play one last time would have been a dream come true.”
Another wrote: “Where is Serena? Your CEO said Monday. We have the receipts. This was a false advertisement ploy to get people to buy tickets for Monday and now they have to buy Tuesday as well.
A third fan posted: “Well I just wasted my money for day and night tickets for Monday thinking Serena and Venus was playing LIKE THEY SAID!!”
Others described the situation as a 'joke' and 'disgrace'.
Agreed! I have an expensive ticket and hotel room based on Serena v Emma!
— Christopher Randles (@Crandles1) August 15, 2022
— J Pineda 🇧🇸&🇨🇴 (@CoachJPineda24) August 15, 2022
Why was the previous post deleted? 😂😂 What happened to the Williams / Raducanu match you advertised for Monday night?
— wtaaddict (@wtaaddict) August 15, 2022
Where is Serena? Your CEO said Monday. We have the receipts. This was a false advertisement ploy to get people to buy tickets for Monday and now they have to buy Tuesday as well
— Katie (@katievarnadoe) August 15, 2022
Rumours are that Serena isn’t 100% … organisers desperate for her to play. And will do anything - even if that means inconveniencing Raducanu (sponsored by Porsche who is a sponsor of the tournament)
— ModSocDem 🇺🇦🌹 (@mod_soc_dem) August 15, 2022
Talk of it being due to a possible injury for Williams? Giving her the extra day to recover or something. Pretty bonkers if that’s the case, regardless of how intriguing this match-up is. Raducanu’s doubles match is still scheduled for tomorrow as well 🤔
— Tom Geoffrey (@TomGeoffrey) August 15, 2022
This is really odd. Feel bad for the fans who purchased session and lose out. The tix don’t carry over, maybe Serena’s hurt? Just not cool for anyone.
— Amber (@queerpoet) August 15, 2022
Serena Williams and Emma Raducanu in generational clash
Speaking ahead of the match, Raducanu said she was excited to be able to play against Williams for the first (and probably last) time.
“For our careers to have crossed like this, I'm fortunate to be able to play her,” Raducanu said ahead of her Cincinnati debut.
“Whatever happens, it will be an incredible experience that I'll surely remember for the rest of my life.
"It will be an exciting match, I'm looking forward to it. It will be an amazing opportunity to play the best tennis player of all time.
"This will probably be my last opportunity."
Williams was already World No.1 when Raducanu was born in November 2002.
The 19-year-old is looking to find some form on the American hard-courts after struggling since her incredible triumph at the US Open last year in which she became the first qualifier in history to win a grand slam.
Williams lost 6-2 6-4 to Belinda Bencic last week at the Canadian Open in Toronto in her first match since she announced her plans to retire.
If she advances she could face 2016 Cincinnati champion Karolina Pliskova in the second round.
There is also is a potential quarter-final matchup with sister Venus if both can make it that far.
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