Coco Gauff has the ability to change world for better, believes tennis legend Martina Navratilova
'She (Gauff) was really brought up with great qualities and it shows how she plays and it shows how she’s active now politically,' said Navratilova
American tennis player Coco Gauff can improve the world, 18-time Grand Slam champion Martina Navratilova has said, lauding the teenage tennis prodigy for her role in the Black Lives Matter protests against racial injustice.
Gauff, 16, released a video on social media protesting killings of African-Americans in the United States amid widespread outrage across the country following the death of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man in police custody in Minneapolis.
“She is just so poised on and off the court, she was really brought up with great qualities and it shows how she plays and it shows how she’s active now politically,” Navratilova told BBC Radio.
“I smile so much when I see the reach she already has now, and she will have in the future. She’s one of those people that can change the world for the better, and she seems to want to do that.”
— Coco Gauff (@CocoGauff) June 4, 2020
The death of Floyd sparked worldwide protests against racism and calls for reforms of US law enforcement. Last month, Gauff appeared at a protest in her hometown of Delray Beach, Florida.
Naomi Osaka, the world’s highest-paid sportswoman, and 23-times Grand Slam winner, Serena Williams, also made themselves heard regarding racial injustice.
Navratilova, who is openly gay, said it was vital for sports stars to speak out.
“Sports has always been at the forefront of social change and it can be that again, with Black Lives Matter and equality for all,” the 63-year-old said.
More than 10,000 athletes from 200 countries and regions are set to travel to Tokyo for the Games, with a decision expected in June on how many domestic fans, if any at all, can attend.
Serena Williams remains uncommitted about whether she will join up with Team USA in Japan this summer, especially if it means time away from her three-year-old daughter Olympia.
"In a normal world I would never consider missing the Olympics. There is no doubt about that," said Nadal. "(But) Under these circumstances, I don't know. Let's see what's going on in the next couple of months."