World rallies around tennis icon Chris Evert after shock cancer news

Seen here, Chris Evert wears a headset as she performs tennis commentary duties.
Chris Evert has revealed that she has been diagnosed with stage 1 ovarian cancer. Pic: Getty

The tennis community is rallying around Chris Evert after the American great revealed she's been diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

Evert says she feels "very lucky" after doctors caught the cancer at an early stage.

'EMBARRASSING': Kyrgios unloads amid Djokovic 's*** show'

'I AM IN PAIN': Jelena Dokic makes heartbreaking personal reveal

'SERIOUS RISK': Government's truth bomb in Novak Djokovic case

The 18-time grand slam champion revealed that she chose to share the news with fans around the world, in the hopes of helping others by spreading awareness.

"I wanted to share my stage 1 ovarian cancer diagnosis, as a way to help others," Evert wrote in a statement posted on Twitter.

"I feel very lucky that they caught it early and expect positive results from my chemo plan.

"Thanks to all of you for respecting my need to focus on my health and treatment plan. You will see me appear from home at times during ESPN's coverage of the Aussie open."

Evert's shock announcement led to an outpouring of support in the tennis world, with fans praising the 67-year-old for speaking up, and wishing her all the best in her recovery.

Chris Evert's younger sister died from cancer

Evert, 67, expanded on her diagnosis in an article posted on ESPN's website that noted that in many cases ovarian cancer goes undetected until it is in a later, less treatable phase.

The American's younger sister, Jeanne Evert Dubin, died of the same disease in February of 2020 at the age of 62.

In October, Evert discovered through improved genetic testing that she, too, was at risk and her cancer was diagnosed in December after she underwent a preventive hysterectomy, according to the ESPN article co-written by the tennis legend.

She began the first of six planned rounds of chemotherapy, and cancer has not been detected elsewhere in her body.

Pictured right, Chris Evert speaks at a press conference alongside fellow tennis great Billie Jean King.
Chris Evert (R) is seen here speaking a press conference alongside fellow tennis great Billie Jean King. Pic: Getty

"I've lived a very charmed life," Evert noted. "Now I have some challenges ahead of me. But, I have comfort in knowing the chemotherapy is to ensure that cancer does not come back."

Evert was a dominant figure in women's tennis in the 1970s, earning 157 WTA singles titles and reaching at least the semi-finals in 52 of 56 Grand Slam tournaments in which she played.

Her two-handed backhand and ruthless precision from the baseline influenced generations of women players. Her rivalry with Martina Navratilova, stretching from 1973 until 1988 and including 14 Grand Slam final clashes, is one of the greatest in sports history.

Since retiring, Evert has worked as a television commentator, and she has also been a mentor to talented young players navigating the early stages of their WTA careers.

with agencies

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.