Backing with the views of legendary tennis players Martina Navratilova and John McEnroe, Andy Murray has asked for removing the name of tennis icon Margaret Court from the arena at the Melbourne Park. This hasn’t come as a surprise, from many years, there have been calls to disassociate the name of 24-time Grand Slam champion from the arenas at the venue of the Australian Open.
The reason behind this is that the 78-year old Court has often been at the receiving end for voicing her opposition to same-sex marriage and transgender athletes. Numerous greats of the sport have heavily criticised such narrow-minded views of Margaret Court, who holds the all-time record of winning the most number of singles Major titles.
Margaret Court has obviously offended and upset a lot of people: Andy Murray
In an interview with Pride Life, five-time Australian Open finalist Andy Murray gave his nod of removing the name of Court from Melbourne Park.
“When you get to the Australian Open, you want to concentrate on the tennis. Court’s views detract from that,” three-time Major winner Murray said.
The 33-year old Brit added, “As far as renaming the venue … yes, it’s something the sport should consider. I don’t know who makes the final decision on that but I don’t think her values are what tennis stands for. She has obviously offended and upset a lot of people over the years. I think the players certainly have spoken up, which is a positive thing.”
The anger on Court’s views is not limited to tennis players, as it was evident during this year’s Australian Open. Margaret Court was subjected to a lukewarm response from the crowds at the tournament when she was being honoured for completing 50 years of her calendar Grand Slam which she achieved in 1970. Moreover, Tennis Australia made it clear that it fully disagreed with her ‘personal views’.