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Today’s hot topic: Is McEnroe’s volley at Court out of order?


JOHN McEnroe has a record of shooting from the lip – and now he’s taken aim at Australian tennis legend Margaret Court.

The American former player is calling on his compatriot Serena Williams to overtake Court’s record of 24 Grand Slams in order to leave Court’s ‘offensive views’ in the past.

Those ‘offensive views’ are Court’s condemnation of gay marriage and transgender athletes arising from her religious beliefs. The 77-year-old, now a church pastor, has also said tennis is ‘full of lesbians’ and branded the teaching of LGBT rights as ‘of the Devil’.

McEnroe says Court, who has one more major singles title than Williams, is a ‘nightmare’ for Tennis Australia. In a video for Eurosport, the seven-times Grand Slam champion said: ‘There’s only one thing longer than the list of Margaret Court’s list of achievements: It’s her list of offensive and homophobic statements.’

On Monday, the Australian Open held a ceremony to mark 50 years since Court completed a calendar Grand Slam. Tennis Australia distanced itself from her views, saying it will ‘recognise’ the anniversary of her playing achievements rather than ‘celebrate’ them.

But should McEnroe’s denunciation of Court’s personal views be welcomed or condemned? And what does it say about the intolerance of today’s wokeness culture that he feels he can disrespect such a groundbreaking sportswoman with impunity – and be reported uncritically? 

And let’s not forget, his own record of petulant behaviour hardly affords scrutiny.


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Edited by Kathy Gyngell

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