La former tennis player Andrea Jaeger, two-time Grand Slam finalistrevealed in an interview with The Independent that was sexually harassed “at least 30 times” in the women’s locker room during her career by a staff officer of the Women’s Tennis Association.
Jaeger, now 57, has won 10 titles in his career before retiring at age 19 due to a shoulder injury who made her go through the operating room seven times. She lost to Martina Navaratilova in the 1982 Roland Garros final and also in the 1983 Wimbledon final. She was also a ‘major’ semifinalist three times: the US Open in 1980 and 1982 and the Australian Open in 1982.
At just 15 years old, he made his first appearance at Wimbledon.age at which she won her first tournament in Las Vegas in 1980. She was the youngest tennis player to be seeded in a Grand Slam (at Wimbledon 80), until she was surpassed by Jennifer Capriati in 1990. Her image, with the ribbon in her hair and two long pigtails, she became one of the most iconic on the women’s circuit at that time.
Jaeger explained how he lived through that time in fear: “I would change in portable toilets or a bathroom to avoid other people’s comments, interest or actions. I had at least 30 incidents with a specific member of staff, physical attempts, all in the locker room very, very early in my career. That particular staff member had a big problem keeping her hands to herself.. She also avoided being alone in the training rooms because she would also approach me there, “said she, who on her day became a tennis prodigy.
Jaeger, who in 2006 became Sister Andrea, a Dominican nun and member of the Episcopal Church in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, said she was also given alcoholic beverages after the 1982 WTA Championships and began to feel ill. An officer took her to her house. “When we arrived, she walked me to the door and tried something on me. She was trying to kiss me. It was so bad that I went up the stairs of the house trying not to vomit so that my dad would not see me.
When the former tennis player reported these events to the WTA, they threatened her with retaliation as revealed in the interview with The Independent: “They told me, ‘If you say one more word about this, we’ll make sure your sister’s scholarship to Stanford is withdrawn.’ Every time I tried to defend myself, they threatened to hurt someone else.”
Jaeger offers the reasons why he has decided to speak up now: “I can see how in any sport, even now, 40 years later, if a child is faced with similar situations, he may also keep quiet when he feels threatened. I don’t want to allow him to come to any more harm,” she notes.