The 2020 Australian Open will celebrate Margaret Court’s 50-year anniversary of achieving the 1970 Grand Slam while simultaneously condemning her views that have “demeaned and hurt many in our community”.
The tennis great has accepted an invitation to attend January’s event at Melbourne Park with tournament organisers wanting to mark her feat of winning all four Grand Slam tournaments, just as was done for Rod Laver this year.
However Tennis Australia has also publicly rebuked her views, which included denouncing same-sex marriage, suggesting homosexuality is an ungodly “lust for the flesh” and saying LGBT tendencies in younger people were “all the devil”.
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“That’s what Hitler did. That’s what communism did,” Court said in 2017. “Get in the minds of the children. There’s a whole plot in our nation and in the nations of the world to get in the minds of the children.”
In a statement to , Tennis Australia said it “does not agree with Margaret’s personal views, which have demeaned and hurt many in our community over a number of years.
“They do not align with our values of equality, diversity and inclusion.”
The organisation will release “guiding principles” which acknowledge “not just our champions, but everyone who plays our sport”.
“The philosophy and culture of our sport goes deeper than winning and setting records,” TA said.
“We seek to foster a sport that is inclusive and welcoming of everyone.”
In her own statement, Court said she was happy to attend the tournament for the first time since 2017.
“This is an incredible milestone for me, and I can’t quite believe how quickly the time has gone,” she said.
“It’s always wonderful to catch up with my fellow legends and I’m grateful to Tennis Australia.”