Australian paper defends Serena Williams cartoon: ‘Welcome to PC World'
© Twitter @damonheraldsun

An Australian newspaper accused of racism for a cartoon that mocked tennis star Serena Williams is defending the artist, releasing a Wednesday cover that reads “Welcome to the PC World.”

Melbourne’s Herald Sun faced backlash after it published a cartoon featuring Williams stomping on her tennis racket after she lost the U.S. Open final to Naomi Osaka over the weekend. 

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Chair umpire Carlos Ramos issued a code violation to Williams during the march, saying she had received coaching during the match — a point Williams strongly denied.

Williams later broke her racket and shouted at Ramos, which led to a penalty point and a game penalty, two costly penalties as Osaka went on to win the match and the championship. 

Ramos is seen in the background of the comic, asking Williams’s opponent if she can “just let her win.”

The newspaper defended the cartoonist, Mark Knight, on Tuesday.

“A champion tennis player had a mega tantrum on the world stage, and Mark’s cartoon depicted that,” editor Damon Johnston said. “It had nothing to do with gender or race. this was about a bad sport being mocked.”

Johnston also took to Twitter to release the cover of publication's Wednesday front page. 

“Welcome to PC World,” the cover reads. “Satire free zone.”

“If the self-appointed censors of Mark Knight get their way on his Serena William cartoon, our new politically correct life will be very dull indeed,” the cover reads.

The front page depicts several comics, including the illustration of Williams, and commentary on other drawings.

“Vetoed: Large hair and lips, too angry,” it reads below the image of Williams.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpHannity urges Trump not to fire 'anybody' after Rosenstein report Ben Carson appears to tie allegation against Kavanaugh to socialist plot Five takeaways from Cruz, O'Rourke's fiery first debate MORE is depicted in a red bathrobe, holding an orange cat with a caption that reads, “Suppressed: Stupid hair, nasty eyes, mouth and chins.”

Knight told the newspaper that his cartoon was a reference to Williams’s behavior.

“The cartoon about Serena is about her poor [behavior] on the day, not about race. The world has just gone crazy.”

Several of his colleagues and members of the Australian media have also defended him on Twitter.