Wozniacki slams Navratilova

2012-02-20 17:48

Dubai - Former world No 1 Caroline Wozniacki hit back at Martina Navratilova on Monday for claiming that the Dane had never deserved to be top of the world rankings.

Wozniacki also suggested she has lost respect for Navratilova, regarded by many as the greatest female player ever, implying that her TV commentating sought to stir things up and that it would be better to "think a little bit."

"I would never say Martina was No 1 when there was no-one playing," Wozniacki said, "or that she was the best when no-one was playing. That would be disrespectful."

Her comment was an echo of Navratilova's remarks at an Australian Open press conference, in which the 55-year-old legend said: "Clearly nobody feels Wozniacki is a true No 1."

Navratilova, whose 18 Grand Slam singles titles were achieved when the women's game had less depth, also criticised the modern ranking system which placed Wozniacki at the top for 68 weeks.

This places too much emphasis on the quantity of wins rather than their quality, Navratilova alleged, suggesting fellow Czech Petra Kvitova, Wimbledon champion and winner of five other titles last year, should have become No 1 instead.

When Wozniacki was asked if she had lost respect as a result of some of the remarks made about her on television, she reacted immediately.

"I think I have to be honest, lost a little bit of respect. Because I respect what they have achieved," she said, referring to players of a previous era who are now commentators.

"And I really respect what someone else (has done), I know how hard it is to reach the top level of a sport like tennis.

"I think I would never say Martina was No 1 when there was no-one playing, or she was the best when no-one was playing. I mean that would be disrespectful.

"She was unbelievable. She won so many Grand Slams, her touch was unbelievable. Martina Hingis was unbelievable as well - for me my favourite player.

"But I think they should respect players that are playing now as well. Because they know how hard it is. You don't just wake up and say okay I want to win this tournament, and it just happens like this. At that point, you are like, they should just think a little bit."

Wozniacki reacted almost as strongly when asked about Navratilova's comment that it was Kvitova and Victoria Azarenka who now formed the game's best rivalry.

"They always have to make comments, and that's what they get paid for - to be comments, because they are not playing any more. And they need to stir everything up," Wozniacki said.

"When I was No 1 they needed to make a story so in the beginning when I was coming up they were saying I was the next big thing.

"Then when I had been there for a while and it got boring... then they said she hasn't won a Grand Slam - because and because and because.

"Soon it will be if Victoria (Azarenka) loses a match, 'how could she lose a match?'"

Wozniacki lost her world No 1 ranking to Azarenka three weeks ago, and is seeded three in defence of the Dubai Open title this week, behind the Belarussian and the Czech.

Kvitova has since withdrawn with a virus, and Wozniacki should play Azarenka in the semi-finals on Friday.


  • Helmut - 2012-02-20 18:35

    Navratilova.............A Man who playd against.........Girls...........What a Chop

  • Michael - 2012-02-20 18:37

    I must say, I agree with Navratilova. Wozniacki has never consistently played the kind of tennis deserving of No 1 status.

  • Wil - 2012-02-20 19:37

    If you have no better comment then Helmut then it is better to say nothing, if Martina was a guy there would not have been such bad comments and fuzz over the years of her being a lesbian. Martina said the first year when Wozniacki won 15 tournaments she deserved to be number one, Wozniacki should watch the press conference in Australia where Martina said things before reacting, she did not say it in her comments at television.

  • Ignatius - 2012-02-20 20:26

    I must be really difficult for a girl like wozniacki to play week after week against unfair opposition

  • Rhea - 2012-02-20 20:31

    Wozzy should shut up with her manly looking big forehead...she's a pusher and will never return to #1...The WTA's gotten in the last 2yrs coz of this pathetic style of shut up & keep falling the rankings!

  • Mark - 2012-02-21 08:08

    Leave the girl alone. She plays her heart out, and happened to be awarded the no1 position. Its not her fault the competition were permanently injured or massively inconsistent from one week to another. The fact is that 68 weeks at no1 is no fluke.

  • jacobisschoff84 - 2012-02-21 08:48

    Did Wozniacki decide how the ranking system must work? Must she now say, "No thank you, I don't want to be no1, please change the ranking system". Crazy for blaming her when she isn't the one working out the ranking points! Blame whoever came up with the calculation in the first place! I am not even a fan of her, but come on, be fair on the girl.

  • Selma - 2012-02-21 09:55

    'Navratilova, whose 18 Grand Slam singles titles were achieved when the women's game had less depth' Are you kidding? Chris Evert, Yvonne Googalong, Hannah Mandikova, Tracy Austin, Steffi Graf, : Arantxa Sánchez Vicario, Monica Seles, Gabriela Sabatini, Conchita Martines .................. it was the golden age of Women's tennis.

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