“A lot of press and television today don’t want to mention my name, the honor was not there for what I did”
Margaret Court, holder of an all-time record of 24 Grand Slam titles, should be hailed as a sports icon for all she has achieved on the tennis court. But some hotly contested views on race relations and the LGBTQ+ community have made the Aussie an outcast, to the point where even her home Grand Slam doesn’t give her the honor she deserves.
That’s what the 80-year-old man thinks in a recent interview with The Telegraph. The 24-time Grand Slam champion remarked that she was very saddened by how most of the media are reluctant to even mention her name, only doing so reluctantly due to her unforgettable track record on the court.
“It’s very sad because a lot of press and TV today, especially in tennis, don’t want to mention my name. It’s only when they have to, because I still hold so many records,” Court said. “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 last time Court was seen in the public eye was at Wimbledon’s recent centenary celebrations, but even there the Aussie revealed no one had spoken to her for fear of backlash. Court pointed out that a similar situation prevails at other Grand Slam tournaments as well, including his major in Australia, which does its best not to partner with the former world No. 1 when possible.
“The French Open didn’t invite me, the US Open didn’t invite me. Rod Laver had won the Slam and I was going to be honored in the same way, but no. I didn’t. lost sleep,” Margaret Court said. “But the honor wasn’t there for what I did. In my own country, I received titles, but they always prefer not to mention me. I was at Wimbledon this year and no one even spoke to me.”
At the same time, Margaret Court harbors no resentment against anyone about it, saying her transformation as a Christian minister makes her respect everyone, no matter how they treat her. It’s at the heart of her beliefs, as the former world No. 1 stressed that everyone deserves to have their own beliefs, whether outdated or controversial.
“I think a lot of that is because I’m a minister and stand up for my beliefs. I had a lot of harassment. But we should be able to say what we believe. I have nothing against anyone,” Court said. “I respect everyone, I serve everyone. I still love the game. I teach a lot of young people today and use illustrations from tennis about discipline, commitment, focus. Sport brings so much to your life.
“Even when I help the poor, some companies are not allowed to donate things to my church because of my name” – Margaret Court
Margaret Court further said in the interview that she has no regrets about her religious entanglement saying that it has helped her enjoy a wonderful life over the years.
“I became a Christian when I was No. 1 in the world. You’ll never change me. That’s what I believe and what the Bible says,” Margaret Court said. “People miss the reality, which can be so wonderful in your life. I’m 80 now, and I’ve been blessed with a wonderful family and a wonderful church.”
However, the Australian lamented the bullying she faced daily from LGBT groups, despite helping the poor in her community at every opportunity.
“We distributed 100 tonnes of food in the community every week. I love it. I loved my tennis days, I believe it was a gift from God and I love what I’m doing today” , said Margaret Court. “But you’re still being bullied by LGBT groups. Even when I’m helping the poor, some companies aren’t allowed to donate things to my church because of my name.”