Court, Margaret Smith

Court, Margaret Smith, 1942–, Australian tennis player. Playing tennis from age eight, she rose to prominence in the early 1960s. Ranked first in world standings six times beginning in 1962, she retired in 1966, but returned to the game in 1968, and in 1970 became the second woman (Maureen Connolly was the first) to win the grand slam. In 1973 she lost a nationally televised match to Bobby Riggs, setting the stage for Riggs's match with Billie Jean King, which gave women's tennis greater prominence. She won her 11th Australian and fifth French and U.S. singles championships that year, which with her three Wimbeldon wins gave her a record 24 singles wins in grand slam events. A Pentacostal minister since 1991, she has become controversial in the 21st cent. for her outspoken criticism of gay rights.

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