Tennis: Wozniacki accuses Wimbledon of sexism and scheduling bias towards men

Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark celebrates after winning her match against Denisa Allertova of the Czech Republic at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London.
Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark celebrates after winning her match against Denisa Allertova of the Czech Republic at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (AFP) - Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki has accused Wimbledon chiefs of failing to give female stars equal billing with their male counterparts on the main show courts.

The Danish fifth seed, one of the marquee names on the women's tour, was exiled to Court Two for her fourth round 6-4, 6-4 defeat against Spain's Garbine Muguruza on Monday.

The 24-year-old Wozniacki believes the decision of All England Club officials to favour matches featuring male stars like Andy Murray, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic over ties involving the leading female players must change.

On Monday, only two of the six matches on Centre Court and Court One - the two biggest arenas at Wimbledon - involved women players.

Serena Williams took on sister Venus on Centre and Maria Sharapova faced Zarina Diyas on Court One.

Murray, Federer and Djokovic were all scheduled for the main courts, as was French Open champion Stan Wawrinka.

Unhappy with a trend she has noticed through the tournament, two-time US Open finalist Wozniacki said: "The women really haven't gotten the opportunity here to play on the big courts.

"You only get one woman's match on Court 1 and Centre Court. Most of last week it was only one woman's match on Court 2 as well.

"It's definitely different. That's all I can say. I think a lot of us women feel like we deserve to play on the big courts in front of a big crowd.

"I would love to play on a big court. I think that's what it's all about. You work hard and practice to play on the big courts."

Seven-time Wimbledon champion Roger Federer dismissed any notion that the scheduling was unfair to the women.

He said: "It is what it is. I'm sure if they're doing it, it's not because of bad intentions.It's just the scheduling and thinking that maybe those are the matches now they want to play on Centre, that's it.

"Of course, they would try to be fair. I would be surprised if it would be otherwise."