Sport

Wimbledon accused of erasing women, masculinity and tennis for calling women by their names

Lily Wakefield May 27, 2022
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Novak Djokovic stands next to the Wimbledon men's honours board, which does not use titles

Novak Djokovic stands next to the Wimbledon men's honours board, which does not use titles. (AELTC/Thomas Lovelock)

Keyboard warriors are having a nonsensical tantrum over a Wimbledon decision to stop defining female tennis champions by their marital status.

On Friday (27 May), it was revealed by Times Sport that Wimbledon would be changing the way it records female champions on its honours boards, where winners of the prestigious tennis tournament are listed each year.

Currently on the men’s honours board, male winners are referred to with their initial and last name, for example “N Djokovic”.

Women, however, are forced to have a title ahead of their name to signal their marital status – unmarried women will have a “miss” in front of their name, and married women have their own names erased altogether.

For example Chris Evert, who won Wimbledon in 1981, is listed on the board as “Mrs J M Lloyd”, after her husband.

If you thought that the change was decades, if not centuries, overdue, you would not be alone – lesbian tennis icon Billie Jean King tweeted that it was “terrific to see Wimbledon making this important change”.

As the the Daily Mail’s cried “woke Wimbledon” and Piers Morgan bizarrely commented “RIP chivalry”, a large group of bigots were predictably confused, doing away with any pretence that they hated trans folk in order to “protect women”.

Twitter users variously described the decision as “erasing masculinity”, “erasing women”, “erasing marriage”, “erasing tennis balls” and “killing tennis”.

“So the world turns into a looney bin by erasing women and their status of marriage,” one wrote.

Another declared “Wimbledon is finished!! Absolutely PATHETIC! You’re a disgrace to tennis and the UK!

“REMEMBER by doing this YOU allow trans folk to now ENTER the women’s event! You just killed tennis. RIP Wimbledon.”

“They’ll be calling it Wimble next in case the don is too masculine,” said another.

While some simply chanted “there are only two genders, male and female” like malfunctioning robots, one Twitter user accidentally advocated for trans inclusion in sports, angrily warning that the change “makes it easier for when a trans man wins the Wimbledon women’s title”.

Luckily, one Twitter user pointed out the one thing that really mattered: “Cool, now pay them the same.”

More: wimbledon

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