Ernests Gulbis from Latvia, 25, made sexist comments when reporters asked him about his two younger sisters who also play tennis. He said that he wishes his sisters would not pursue professional tennis, as it’s tough for a woman.
“A woman needs to enjoy life a little bit more. Needs to think about family needs to think about kids. What kids you can think about until age of 27 if you’re playing professional tennis, you know. That’s tough for a woman, I think.” said Gulbis.
— Natasha Henry (@NatashaSHenry) May 31, 2014
The comments again came out when reporters asked 27-year-old Maria Sharapova about what she thought of Gulbis’ statement.
Sharapova answered that people shouldn’t take everything Gulbis says seriously. “I mean let’s be honest with that. I think he’s great entertainment and we love to listen to what he has to say… in a way, I think he was joking, but he’s playing the sport, so how bad can it be?” She continued to say that if professional tennis were so bad, Gulbis wouldn’t be playing it even though he’s a man.
Sharapova also said that playing professional tennis brings many opportunities to women, especially given her experiences. However, she also said that she wouldn’t wish the same experience for her kids.
“But then when I’m playing the matches, I’m in front of thousands of people and the experience that this sport brings, I think, of course I want my kids to do this, this is such a huge lesson in life,” Sharapova said.
Gulbis’ comments may be sexist for some, but for others, he is only looking out for his younger sisters and being protective of them like a brother should.
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