Navratilova blames BBC of promoting gender pay gap

ANI | Updated: Mar 20, 2018 20:18 IST

London [United Kingdom], March 20 (ANI): American tennis star Martina Navratilova has alleged that BBC paid a male voice ten times more as much as for the same role.

The nine-time Wimbledon champion Navratilova said that she was paid 15,000 USD by the BBC for her commentator role at the Wimbledon, while her male fellow John McEnroe was paid 150,000 USD and 199,999 USD.

"It was a shock because John McEnroe makes at least £150,000 ... I get about £15,000 for Wimbledon and unless John McEnroe's doing a whole bunch of stuff outside of Wimbledon he's getting at least 10 times as much money," the Guardian quoted Navratilova as saying in a TV programme.

The tennis star added that she was told that she was getting paid a comparable amount to her male fellow for the same work but it was not true.

"It's still the good old boys' network ... The bottom line is that male voices are valued more than women's voices," the 61-year-old year old said.

Meanwhile, BBC Sport defended the discrepancy, saying the two had different contracts.

It said that McEnroe's role had different time commitment and was not comparable to that of Navratilova.

"Along with Sue Barker, John is regarded as the face of our Wimbledon coverage. He is a defining voice within the BBC's coverage. He is widely considered to be the best expert/commentator in the sport, highly valued by our audiences and his contract means he cannot work for another UK broadcaster without our permission," BBC said in a statement.

It added, "His pay reflects all of this - gender isn't a factor." (ANI)