Martina Navratilova: BBC pays John McEnroe 10 times more for Wimbledon

Martina Navratilova still believes that 'male voices are valued more than women's voices'. Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Tennis legend Martina Navratilova has hit out at the BBC after discovering that fellow Wimbledon pundit John McEnroe is paid at least 10 times more than her.

McEnroe's pay packet of £150,000 to £199,999 a year was revealed in a list of the BBC's top-paid talent last summer.

In an interview for Panorama: Britain's Equal Pay Scandal, Navratilova, 61, said she is paid around £15,000 by the BBC for her commentator role at Wimbledon.

"It was a shock because John McEnroe makes at least £150,000," she said. "I get about £15,000 for Wimbledon and unless John McEnroe's doing a whole bunch of stuff outside of Wimbledon he's getting at least 10 times as much money.

Navratilova said that she was told she was getting paid a comparable amount to men doing the same job as her, adding: "We were not told the truth, that's for sure....

"Not happy. It's shocking. It's still the good old boys network. The bottom line is that male voices are valued more than women's voices."

Navratilova, who was crowned Wimbledon ladies' champion nine times, said that her agent will ask for more money in future.

BBC Sport defended the difference, stating: "John and Martina perform different roles in the team, and John's role is of a different scale, scope and time commitment. They are simply not comparable. John's pay reflects all of this, gender isn't a factor."

A BBC spokeswoman added that McEnroe, along with Sue Barker, is "regarded as the face of our Wimbledon coverage" and "widely considered to be the best expert/commentator in the sport".

Panorama said it estimated that three-time Wimbledon winner McEnroe appeared around 30 times for the BBC at Wimbledon last year, compared to Navratilova's 10 appearances.

The gender pay gap has been in the headlines since the salaries of top BBC talent were revealed, with the list being dominated by the broadcaster's male employees.

A review commissioned by the BBC found a 6.8 percent gender pay gap -- but "no evidence of gender bias in pay decision-making".

Former China editor Carrie Gracie, who resigned from her role in protest at inequalities and now works for the BBC in London, said she could leave the corporation. Furthermore, former BBC news presenter Maxine Mawhinney said she is considering bringing a case against the broadcaster over pay.

Fran Unsworth, the BBC's director of news and current affairs, told Panorama: "We don't think we have acted illegally in regard to equal pay.

"That doesn't mean, however, there won't be instances and cases where there is inequality and we need to address those."