Ilie Nastase faces Wimbledon 'ban' after Serena Williams comment

Russell Hope, News Reporter

Ilie Nastase could be barred from this year's Wimbledon following his recent comment about Serena Williams' unborn baby.

The All England Club's chairman, Philip Brook, said he "condemned" the behaviour of the two-time Wimbledon runner-up.

"What he did, I think his actions were not very good and we condemn them... In terms of an invitation to the Royal Box, he's not going to receive an invitation this year."

Wimbledon chief executive Richard Lewis went further and said Nastase "could be stopped at the gate" if he tried to enter the grounds with a ticket.

"If he is suspended and we noticed him, he would be stopped," Lewis said.

The 70-year-old is provisionally banned from all International Tennis Federation (ITF) events after making comments viewed by many as racist, abusive and sexist during last month's Fed Cup tie between Romania and Great Britain.

Nastase, Romania's captain, appeared to call GB's captain Anne Keothavong and player Johanna Konta "f****** bitches".

He was asked to leave the court for "unsportsmanlike conduct" having already received two official warnings.

Before the tie began, he also asked Keothavong for her room number while posing for pictures at a photo shoot.

He told the team captain, who is married and 18 weeks pregnant with her second child: "We keep being attracted."

He is also under investigation for remarks about Serena Williams' unborn child during the same event.

At a news conference, Nastase - speaking in Romanian - could be clearly heard saying to other players: "Let's see what colour it has. Chocolate with milk?"

Nastase, who regularly courted controversy during his career and was known as 'Mr Nasty,' made an attempt at an apology after his comments.

However, he was also quick to criticise the "escalation of the situation", which he claimed had been "exaggerated by all".

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