Wimbledon’s greatest singles champion Martina Navratilova announced today that she has been diagnosed with two types of cancer.
Navratilova, 66, who won a record nine Wimbledon titles, said she was diagnosed with throat and breast cancer after discovering a swollen lymph node in her neck in November.
“This double whammy is serious but it can still be fixed,” said the Czech-American, who is married to former Russian beauty queen Julia Lemigova, 50. I hope for a favorable result. It’s going to suck for a while, but I’ll fight with everything I’ve got.
The former world number one’s diagnosis comes after she was cleared for breast cancer in 2010 after radiation treatment.
Tennis star Martina Navratilova (pictured at Wimbledon in 2022) announced today that she has been diagnosed with two types of cancer.
“This double whammy is serious but it can still be fixed,” said the Czech-American, who is married to former Russian beauty queen Julia Lemigova, 50 (pictured together in New York in 2019).
Navratilova, who won 59 Grand Slam singles and doubles titles over the course of her 40-year career, will not travel to this month’s Australian Open, where she had intended to work as a television commentator.
But a statement from Navratilova’s representative described the prognosis as “good.”
“Martina Navratilova has been diagnosed with stage one throat cancer,” the statement read. ‘The prognosis is good and Martina will start her treatment this month.
‘The type of cancer is HPV and this particular type responds very well to treatment. Martina noticed an enlarged lymph node in her neck during the WTA Finals in Fort Worth. When she didn’t come down, a biopsy was done, the results came back as stage one throat cancer.
Elise Mertens (R) of Belgium, former tennis player Martina Navratilova (C) and Veronika Kudermetova (L) of Russia pose with the Martina Navratilova Trophy after defeating Katerina Siniakova and Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic in their women’s doubles final match during the 2022 WTA Finals in Fort Worth, Texas on November 7, 2022
Navratilova, 66, who won a record nine Wimbledon titles, said she was diagnosed with throat and breast cancer after discovering a swollen lymph node in her neck in November. Pictured: Navratilova lifting the trophy from her after winning the women’s final in 1990 for a record ninth time.
Martina Navratilova reacts after defeating Germany’s Barbara Rittner June 26, 1992 to qualify for the fourth round of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships.
‘At the same time that Martina was undergoing throat tests, a suspicious shape was found in her breast, which was later diagnosed as cancer, completely unrelated to throat cancer.
“Both types of cancer are in their early stages with excellent results. Martina won’t be covering the Australian Open for Tennis Channel from her studio, but she hopes to join in from time to time via Zoom.
Navratilova, who was born in Revnice, Czech Republic, and was one of the first openly gay sports figures, won a record nine Wimbledon singles titles between 1978 and 1990 in a career that saw her dominate tennis with 18 Grand Slam titles in total.
Nearing her 50th birthday in 2006, Navratilova decided to retire from professional tennis after her last Grand Slam, a mixed doubles championship with Bob Bryan at the US Open. She became the oldest player to win a Grand Slam title during that match.
Since her retirement, the former lefty has become a prominent commentator on the sport and has been part of the BBC’s coverage of Wimbledon.
Former tennis player Martina Navratilova (left) sits with Kate, now Princess of Wales, and Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex in the Royal Box at Wimbledon before the final between Serena Williams of the USA and Simona Halep of Romania in July 2019.
American tennis player Martina Navratilova waves as she is introduced in the Royal Box on Center Court at the All England Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 6, 2019.
Navratilova married his wife Lemigova in 2015 after nine years together. The couple met more than 20 years ago in a Parisian gay bar.
Navratilova came out as gay in 1981 and has since advocated for equal rights and supported dozens of LGBT charities.
In 2010, Navratilova was diagnosed with breast cancer, but after a six-month battle, she was given the all-clear.
The tennis ace underwent surgery and six weeks of radiation after being diagnosed with breast cancer in early 2010.
Navratilova opened up about her battle with breast cancer and how she was more concerned at the time with the impact it had on her mother.
Martina Navratilova playing for the United States in the July 1986 Fed Cup in Prague, Czechoslovakia in July 1986
She said during an interview in 2019: ‘I found out it was DCIS, which is not the worst guy. Sometimes I feel like I was lucky, I had cancer, well, if ever there was an oxymoron.
“For me, the scariest parts were going back to the doctor and getting a mammogram to see if there was anything else.
‘Growing up in a communist country, you have to keep things under control. And then I left my family and didn’t see my parents for four years. And that’s why I’m going to start crying because I can’t get that time back.
Just think, keep going. Because the worst part of my life was already behind me.
‘It’s just me, I can deal with it, but what hurt me was hurting my mother. Because cancer was a piece of cake.
Navratilova found herself embroiled in a discussion with the BBC over pay a few years ago after she revealed that John McEnroe was paid 10 times more than she was for the expert analysis the two provided during Wimbledon.
The Czech-American legend told a larger BBC Panorama investigation of Britain’s equal pay scandal about the disparity between what they receive for their services during the iconic fortnight.
He instructed his agent to ask for more money and said he was upset when he discovered the different pay scales.