John McEnroe is on a bit of a blitz at the moment, and the latest tennis player to find themselves in the cross hairs is Serena Williams.
Last week Andy Murray was told he is a distant fourth, despite being ranked number one in the world (HERE), but I guess the next question for McEnroe to ponder is where Serena Williams would rank amongst the men.
It’s an odd line of questioning to go down, but that didn’t stop him from having a pop. Bleacher Report below:
In an interview with McEnroe, NPR’s Lulu Garcia-Navarro brought up the idea of Williams being the best player in the world—men’s or women’s—in the game today. McEnroe disputed the notion and said Williams would be “be like 700 in the world” if she played on the ATP World Tour.
For a little context, it’s worth heading over to NPR to see that exchange in full:
Garcia-Navarro: We’re talking about male players but there is of course wonderful female players. Let’s talk about Serena Williams. You say she is the best female player in the world in the book.
McEnroe: Best female player ever — no question.
Garcia-Navarro: Some wouldn’t qualify it, some would say she’s the best player in the world. Why qualify it?
McEnroe: Oh! Uh, she’s not, you mean, the best player in the world, period?
Garcia-Navarro: Yeah, the best tennis player in the world. You know, why say female player?
McEnroe: Well because if she was in, if she played the men’s circuit she’d be like 700 in the world.
Garcia-Navarro: You think so?
McEnroe: Yeah. That doesn’t mean I don’t think Serena is an incredible player. I do, but the reality of what would happen would be I think something that perhaps it’d be a little higher, perhaps it’d be a little lower. And on a given day, Serena could beat some players. I believe because she’s so incredibly strong mentally that she could overcome some situations where players would choke ’cause she’s been in it so many times, so many situations at Wimbledon, The U.S. Open, etc. But if she had to just play the circuit — the men’s circuit — that would be an entirely different story.
McEnroe was quick to add that one of his daughters labelled him a feminist, but couldn’t dodge the question of whether he thinks he would beat Serena:
Garcia-Navarro: You really think at 60, you could possibly beat Serena Williams? Maybe pregnant.
McEnroe: The way you put that makes me think that you have your doubts.
Garcia-Navarro: Far be it from me to question you Mr. McEnroe.
McEnroe: Well, you know, my kids do, so feel free to. But there’s people that because of course as you get older — I’m not sure how athletic you are and how often you get out in whatever sport it is, but I have kept at it regularly. I’ve done it sort of doing this playing some other guys close to my age even though they keep getting younger and younger. Obviously, if I was going to do something like that, I would train very seriously for that to make sure my body was at, like, the peak it could be. Absolutely — to try and be as ready as I possibly could, but I bring things to the table, certainly until recently. I may be way past it, but I can still bring a few things to the table and so that’s why I guess people still find it interesting to even talk about.
I call a Sunday double header – we start with Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel battling it out in a ring (HERE), followed by McEnroe and Serena on court.
I know who my money would be on.
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