Cape Town - Tennis icon Martina Navratilova has been removed as an ambassador by Athlete Ally, an organisation that supports LGBT athletes, following her controversial comments on transgender athletes.
In an article for British newspaper The Sunday Times, the 18-times women's singles Grand Slam champion wrote that it was "cheating" to allow transgender women to compete in women's sport as they had unfair physical advantages.
"A man can decide to be female, take hormones if required by whatever sporting organisation is concerned, win everything in sight and perhaps earn a small fortune, and then reverse his decision and go back to making babies if he so desires," Navratilova wrote.
Navratilova, who came out as gay in the 1980s, added: "It's insane and it's cheating. I am happy to address a transgender woman in whatever form she prefers, but I would not be happy to compete against her. It would not be fair."
In a statement released on their official website, the organisation said: "Athlete Ally unequivocally stands on the side of trans athletes and their right to access and compete in sport free from discrimination. Martina Navratilova’s recent comments on trans athletes are transphobic, based on a false understanding of science and data, and perpetuate dangerous myths that lead to the ongoing targeting of trans people through discriminatory laws, hateful stereotypes and disproportionate violence.
"As an organisation dedicated to addressing root causes of homophobia and transphobia in and through sport, we will only affiliate with those committed to the same goal, and not those who further misinformation or discrimination in any way. Given this, Navratilova has been removed from our Advisory Board and as an Athlete Ally Ambassador, effective immediately."