Martina Navratilova has taken aim at fellow former tennis great Margaret Court over gay marriage.
Martina Navratilova has taken aim at fellow former tennis great Margaret Court over gay marriage. MICK TSIKAS

Navratilova suggests Court takes boat in future

AS THE debate heats up over airlines and gay marriage, the tennis world is going through a divorce.

After Australian great Margaret Court's announcement she will stop using Qantas "where possible” over the airline's promotion of same-sex marriage, other tennis greats have given her a serve.

Martina Navratilova, who is in a same-sex marriage, tweeted: "Maybe it's time to change the name of the Margaret Court Arena then ... and I guess Margaret will be taking the boat on her next trip?”

Court is an all-time great, having won a record 24 grand slam titles from 1960-73. Navratilova is no slouch either, having won 18 grand slam singles titles.

She later tweeted: "Thank you Qantas for your support. And Margaret - you have gone too far. Shame on you.”

The organisation behind the arena, Melbourne & Olympic Parks, posted on Facebook it did "not support Margaret Court's comments and we remain an organisation committed to embracing equality, diversity and inclusion”.

Openly gay current Australian player Casey Dellacqua was attacked for having a "fatherless child” with her "partner” - Court couldn't bring herself to use the term without putting quotes on it - in a letter to the West Australian newspaper in 2013.

Dellacqua tweeted a picture of the letter yesterday and said: "Margaret, enough is enough.”

Asked whether Court's name should be removed at the National Tennis Centre, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull showed some fancy footwork on radio 3AW: "Whatever people think of her opinion on gay marriage, she is one of the all-time greats and the arena celebrates that.”

The other major domestic airline, Virgin, also supports gay marriage.

At the very least, it should make travel interesting unless Court takes Navratilova's advice and goes by boat.

Court sparked the latest stoush in a letter in the West Australian, saying: "I believe in marriage as a union between a man and a woman as stated in the Bible.”



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