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Martina Navratilova says she’s ‘OK’ following cancer diagnosis: ‘I’ve gone through a very difficult year’

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Earlier his year, Tennis legend Martina Navratilova announced that she had been diagnosed with throat and breast cancer. 

Now, the 18-time Grand Slam champion says she is doing “OK,” just two months after revealing that she is cancer-free. 

Former tennis player Martina Navratilova, right, is awarded with the “Golden Racket” from Nicola Pietrangeli prior to the men’s singles final between Holger Rune of Denmark and Daniil Medvedev during day fourteen of the Internazionali BNL D’Italia 2023 at Foro Italico on May 21, 2023 in Rome. (Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

Navratilova, 66, provided the update at the Italian Open on Sunday after she was awarded the Golden Racket for contributions to the sport. 

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“I’ve gone through a very difficult year, but now I’m OK,” she said as she gave her speech on the clay court. 

Navratilova announced her diagnosis in January. She said she had found a lump on her neck in November and while undergoing testing, it was also discovered that her breast cancer had returned. 

Martina Navratilova in 2021

WTA Legend Ambassador Martina Navratilova attends the Official Draw Ceremony and Gala Evening before the 2021 Akron WTA Finals Guadalajara at Zapopan City Hall on Nov. 8, 2021 in Zapopan, Mexico. (Hector Vivas/Getty Images for WTA)

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She underwent treatment, and in late March, she said during an interview with TalkTV’s Piers Morgan, that she was cancer-free. 

“Tennis gave me a surprising life for which I am very grateful,” she added Sunday. “I always tried to give something back when I played, and also in retirement.”

Martina Navratilova is awarded with the "Golden Racket"

Former tennis player Martina Navratilova reacts prior to the Men’s Singles Final match between Holger Rune of Denmark and Daniil Medvedev on Day Fourteen of the Internazionali BNL D’Italia 2023 at Foro Italico on May 21, 2023 in Rome. (Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

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Navratilova retired in 1994 but would return to the court years later to play in doubles matches. She has a record 167 singles titles and her 331 weeks at No. 1 in the WTA rankings is the second most of any female pro.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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