Tennis legend Chris Evert reveals cancer return, will miss Australian Open

Tennis Hall of Famer Chris Evert revealed on Friday the return of her cancer and announced that she will temporarily step away from the booth. 

Evert, who works as an on-air announcer for ESPN, revealed in January 2022 that she whad been diagnosed with stage 1C ovarian cancer.

Chris Evert talks to the media during a press conference on Day 5 of the GNP Seguros WTA Finals Cancun 2023 part of the Hologic WTA Tour on November 2, 2023, in Cancun, Mexico.  (Robert Prange/Getty Images)

“Since I was first diagnosed with cancer two years ago, I’ve been very open about my experience,” Evert said Friday in a statement released through ESPN. “I wanted to give you all an update. My cancer is back. While this is a diagnosis I never wanted to hear, I once again feel fortunate it was caught early. 

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“Based on a PET CT scan, I underwent another robotic surgery this past week. Doctors found cancer cells in the same pelvic region. All cells were removed, and I have begun another round of chemotherapy.” 

Evert, 68, won 18 Grand Slam tournaments, was a former No. 1 in the WTA rankings and was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1995.

Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert talk to the media

Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert talk to the media during a press conference on Day 5 of the GNP Seguros WTA Finals Cancun 2023 part of the Hologic WTA Tour on November 2, 2023, in Cancun, Mexico  (Robert Prange/Getty Images)

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She has been an analyst for ESPN since 2011 but will be unable to be on the call at the Australian Open in January. 

“I will be unable to join my colleagues when ESPN makes its return to Melbourne for the Australian Open next month,” Evert’s statement continued. “But I’ll be ready for the rest of the Grand Slam season!”

Evert’s sister, Jeanne Evert Dubin, died from ovarian cancer in February 2020 at age 62.

Chris Evert callas a tennis match

Chris Evert sighted during the women’s quarterfinals match at the Miami Open on March 27, 2019, at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, FL.  (Michele Sandberg/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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Evert announced that she was “cancer-free” in an op-ed for ESPN in January 2023 and that there was a “90% chance that the ovarian cancer will never come back.”

“I encourage everyone to know your family history and advocate for yourself,” Evert said. “Early detection saves lives. Be thankful for your health this holiday season.”

Fox News’ Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.

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