Australian great Margaret Court has given a shock interview following Serena Williams’ farewell match in which she lamented the disdain she believes the American legend and the tennis world hold for her.
“Serena – I admired her as a player,” Court told Britain’s The Telegraph.
“But I don’t think she ever admired me.
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Court’s raw comments followed Williams’ third-round exit at the US Open, in which the 23-time Grand Slam singles champion was knocked out by Australia’s Ajla Tomljanović.
Williams’ latest hurray comes about a month after she left-handedly but aptly announced her retirement, revealing in US lifestyle magazine Vogue that she would “evolve from tennis” after this year’s US Open.
The 40-year-old ousted Danka Kovinić in the first round and Anett Kontaveit in the second before a loss to Tomljanović ended her last chance to match Court’s record for singles titles.
Court won 24 Grand Slam singles crowns in the 1960s and 1970s, yet at the US Open, all signs pointed to the outgoing Williams being the GOAT.
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“It’s very sad because a lot of the press and television today, especially in tennis, don’t want to mention my name,” Court said.
“Only when I have to because I still hold so many records.
“In 2020, I was supposed to come to Wimbledon for the 50th anniversary of my calendar Grand Slam. But then COVID hit, so the honor never happened. The French Open didn’t invite me, the US Open didn’t invite me.” .
“Rod Laver won a slam and I should have been honored in the same way, but I wasn’t.
“I didn’t lose sleep over it, but there was no honor for what I did.
“In my own nation I have been given titles, but still I would rather not be mentioned.
The court’s condemnation of the gay community is the main reason why she has fallen out of favor with the tennis world.
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Court, who turned 80 in July, is a devout Christian and never afraid to share her controversial views.
In 2012, she publicly opposed same-sex marriage in Australia, before saying in 2017 that she would refuse to fly with Qantas because of his support for the cause.
The decision in 2021 to award the court a Companion of the Order of Australia, the highest category of prestige awarded in the Australia Day honours, has sparked outrage.
At the end of Court’s interview with The Telegraph, she criticized an attitude she believed held by many of today’s players – not just Williams.
“That’s what disappointed me — that today’s players don’t honor the past of the game,” Court said.
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