Margaret Court has vowed to maintain her opposition to homosexuality and same-sex marriage, undeterred by gay activists planning to use next week's Australian Open tennis championships to protest against her views.
Court, Australia's greatest women's tennis player and a senior pastor at Perth's Victory Life Centre church, said she had never "run from anything" and expected Australian Open organisers to prevent next week's tournament from being hijacked by the gay rights agenda.
"Are they not wanting me to come to the Australian Open? Is that what they are trying to do? I don't run from anything," Court told The Australian yesterday.
"I have always been a champion and always loved what I do and love tennis. I think it is very sad they can bring it into that. It is hard that they can voice their opinions but I am not allowed to voice my opinion. There is something wrong somewhere.
"We live in a free society and I stand up for families between a husband and a wife. I won't ever back down on that."
Court's views on homosexuality, which she has publicly held for more than 20 years, have prompted gay activists to launch a "Rainbow Flags Over Margaret Court Arena" Facebook site urging people to display gay pride colours at the stadium court named after her.