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Wimbledon champion Martina Navratilova has been diagnosed with two types of cancer

Jess Hardiman

Published 
| Last updated 

Wimbledon champion Martina Navratilova has been diagnosed with two types of cancer

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Wimbledon champion Martina Navratilova has announced she has been diagnosed with cancer, vowing to ‘fight’ with all she’s got.

The Czech-born American tennis player, 66, has both throat and breast cancer, with plans to start treatment later this month.

She had noticed an enlarged lymph node in her neck in November last year, with a biopsy later revealing stage one throat cancer.

Further tests also found a lump in her breast, which was diagnosed as an unrelated cancer.

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Navratilova, who has won Wimbledon a record nine times, said in a statement: “This double whammy is serious but still fixable.

“I'm hoping for a favorable outcome. It's going to stink for a while but I'll fight with all I have got.”

Martina Navratilova. Credit: Horizon International Images/Alamy Stock Photo
Martina Navratilova. Credit: Horizon International Images/Alamy Stock Photo

A statement from her representative also described her prognosis as ‘good’, saying she would no longer be travelling to the Australian Open later this month, where she was due to work as a pundit.

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“Martina Navratilova has been diagnosed with stage one throat cancer,” the statement said.

“The prognosis is good and Martina will start her treatment this month.

“The cancer type is HPV and this particular type responds really well to treatment. Martina noticed an enlarged lymph node in her neck during the WTA finals in Fort Worth. When it didn't go down, a biopsy was performed, the results came back as stage one throat cancer.

“At the same time as Martina was undergoing the tests for the throat, a suspicious form was found in her breast, which was subsequently diagnosed as cancer, completely unrelated to the throat cancer.

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“Both these cancers are in their early stages with great outcomes. Martina won't be covering the Australian Open for Tennis Channel from their studio but hopes to be able to join in from time to time by Zoom.”

Credit: Instagram/@martinanavratilova
Credit: Instagram/@martinanavratilova

Navratilova, who is married to former Russian beauty queen Julia Lemigova, 50, previously faced breast cancer in 2010.

Speaking about the ordeal on The All New Monty: Ladies Night in 2019, she explained: “I found out it was DCIS which is not the worst kind. Sometimes I feel like I lucked out, I had the good cancer - if ever there was an oxymoron.

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"For me the scariest parts were going back to the doctor and getting a mammogram to see if anything else is there.”

Navratilova continued: “Growing up in a communist country, you have to keep things buttoned up. And then I left my family and I didn't see my parents for four years. And that's what I'll start crying about because I can't get that time back.

“You just think, get on with it. Because the worst part of my life was already behind me.

“This is only me, I can deal with it, but what hurt me was hurting my mum. Because cancer was a piece of cake.”

Topics: Celebrity

Jess Hardiman
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