Tennis

Ilie Nastase .

Ilie Nastase has been banned from Wimbledon's Royal Box

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Controversial Romanian Ilie Nastase will not be invited to the Royal Box at Wimbledon this year, it has been confirmed.

The 70-year-old Romanian is under investigation for comments he made regarding Serena Williams' unborn child.

Williams has said that she found Nastase’s comments to be racist, stating: "It disappoints me to know we live in a society where people like Ilie Nastase can make such racist comments.

"I have said it once and I'll say it again, this world has come so far but yet we have so much further to go.

"Yes, we have broken down so many barriers - however there are a plethora more to go.

"This or anything else will not stop me from pouring love, light and positivity into everything that I do. I will continue to take a lead and stand up for what's right."

Williams is due to give birth to her first child in the autumn.

70-year-old Nastase has tried to defend himself from these allegations surrounding his comments about Serena Williams, believing that the English press were out to get him.

"For me it's not racial. Somebody in England thinks it is.

“English people considered it was racist and everybody picked it up like that.

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"Romanians don't think it was a racial word. The only person who can get upset maybe is Serena, but not you people in England. Why does everybody else get upset?I don't understand. Whatever."

This isn't the only controversy Nastase has been involved in, however.

Last month, Nastase insulted Johanna Konta and asked for Fed Cup match captain Anne Keothavong room number (repeatedly) during a match in Romania back in April.

Philip Brook, chairman of the All England club, confirmed that the former Wimbledon finalist in 1972 and 1976 would not be invited to the Royal Box this year.

Speaking about Nastase, Brooks clarified the all England club's position regarding the 70-year-old: "His actions were not very good and we condemn them. In terms of an invitation to the Royal Box, he is not going to receive an invitation this year."

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The International Tennis Federation has launched an investigation into the incident that left British number one Konta in tears.

Nastase was involved in a discussion with officials during the Fed Cup match between Romania and Great Britain, after repeatedly calling Konta and Keothavong “b******”.

Nastase's defence was as abhorrent as his actions, as he said: "I sit in the front row and the guy came and said: 'You have to leave the stadium.' Then I start to scream at Konta and the other girl. That's what I did.

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"I was not on the court, I have to remind you that. I was thrown out of the game. I said that from the crowd. I wasn't on the court, there is a difference. I'm not anymore the coach of the team.

"I was upset when they throw me out of the court.

“ Then when he said to leave the stadium also then I was upset because the girls they said they didn't want me in the stands anymore. So then I scream at her and the coach."

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Topics:
Tennis
Rafael Nadal
Serena Williams
Maria Sharapova
Wimbledon
Roger Federer
Novak Djokovic
Andy Murray

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