Martina Navratilova Nov 2, 2023; Cancun, Mexico; Martina Navratilova in a joint press conference with Chris Evert on day five of the GNP Saguaros WTA Finals Cancun. Mandatory Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports

Tennis legend Martina Navratilova is feuding with a tennis reporter who criticized her for leading what he terms an “anti-trans crusade.”

Navratilova spoke out Friday after the “Take Back Title IX” tour bus was vandalized in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The bus, sponsored by the Independent Women’s Forum, has been used at rallies featuring female athletes speaking out against transgender athletes in women’s sports. The vandalism included messages calling the group anti-trans.

One of the women on the tour, Kara Dansky, posted a message on X decrying the vandalism, saying, “There are some leftists on the tour. I am one of them.”

Navratilova, who is gay and is a strong supporter of gay rights, has been outspoken about her opposition to transgender athletes in women’s sports, calling them “failed male athletes.” She responded, “So am I and so are hundreds of thousands of women who support us. I should say millions, actually. I am a leftist. I would call the people who did this cowards and anarchists who don’t give a s*** about women.”

The tennis legend’s post drew a quick response from Ben Rothenberg, a reporter and host of the @NCR_Tennis podcast, who said Navratilova has been spreading “transphobic vitriol.”

“Martina Navratilova turning this anti-trans crusade into her life’s obsession in recent years remains dispiriting!” Rothenberg posted. “And she turns it into way more transphobic vitriol than just discussing sports fairness, as I’ve covered before, just being nasty and cruel and dehumanizing. Boo.”

Navratilova fired back at the reporter.

“@BenRothenberg Yet another man telling women what they should care about,”she posted. “And who are you exactly ? Oh yeah, the reporter who tells tennis players it’s off the record and then prints what they said anyway. Good to know you care about women’s sports and women’s sex based spaces. I care.

One of the most controversial issues of our time in women’s sports won’t be solved in a debate on X.

[Martina Navratilova]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.