Martina Navratilova, a tennis icon who was recently diagnosed with breast and throat cancer, says she is praying for a “positive conclusion.” The 66-year-old American native of Czechoslovakia revealed the diagnosis on Monday but noted that both conditions were curable.
The 18-time Grand Slam singles champion has previously been diagnosed with cancer; in 2010, she was found to have breast cancer, but six months later, the diagnosis was changed to “clean.” The double whammy is significant, but it can be fixed, and she expressed hope for a successful ending. “I’ll fight with everything I’ve got, but it’s going to stink for a while.”
Navratilova noticed an enlarged lymph node in her neck during November’s WTA Finals in Fort Worth, Texas. “When it didn’t go down, a biopsy was performed, the results came back as stage one throat cancer,” her agent said in a statement sent to AFP.
During the tests, a lump was also discovered in her breast, which was later diagnosed as an unrelated cancer. “The prognosis is good and Martina will start her treatment this month,” said her agent.
Navratilova’s treatment in New York has forced her to abandon plans to commentate on the Australian Open although she will appear from time to time remotely. Chris Evert, Navratilova’s great rival on the courts who became her friend, revealed in January 2022 that she had ovarian cancer but was declared to be in remission in May.
As a player, Navratilova brought a new physical dimension to women’s tennis. Her powerful serve and agility at the net made her the dominant payer of her era as she picked up a total of 59 Major titles — 31 doubles and 10 mixed doubles adding to her 18 singles titles. Her record at Wimbledon is unparalleled, her nine singles titles more than anyone else – Roger Federer won eight men’s titles while Serena Williams won the women’s title seven times.