Former Wimbledon finalist Andrea Jaeger claims that she was sexually harassed “on at least 30 separate occasions” in the 1980’s by a Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) staff member in the locker room during her career. Jaeger also alleges that she was unknowingly given alcoholic beverages by a different WTA staff member when she was just 16-years-old and that the same staff member attempted to kiss her after dropping her off at her apartment.
Jaeger made the allegations in an interview with “The Independent,” and claims that when she approached “someone in authority at the WTA,” she was threatened and told not to “say one more word” about the incident.
Fox News has reached out to the WTA for comment.
Jaeger turned professional at just 14-years-old, and reached five Grand Slam semifinals and the Wimbledon final in her career. She retired in 1985, citing a shoulder injury.
In her interview with “The Independent,” Jaeger claims that one female WTA staff member made at least 30 “physically inappropriate advances” on her early in her career, causing Jaeger to stop using the room if other players weren’t present.
“I’d change in portable toilets or a bathroom stall because I didn’t want to deal with the comments, interest or actions of people,” she says. “Someone recognized me at the US Open once and asked what I was doing, so I just said a pipe was broken in the locker room. There was always the concern I may have to deal with an adult who had problems with being either verbally or physically inappropriate with me.”
Jaeger told the publication that she considered telling her father, Roland, about the harassment, but chose not to out of fear of how he would react.
In 1982, when Jaeger was 16, Jaeger alleges that a WTA staff provided her with alcoholic beverages without her knowledge at a party following the WTA Championships in Florida.
“She came back with two glasses,” she says. “I thought mine tasted really weird.”
After three drinks, Jaeger approached the bartender and was told that the WTA staff member had ordered the drinks for Jaeger with rum in them.
Jaeger says that the WTA staff member drove her home, and attempted to kiss her in front of Jaeger’s condo.
“I went with her and her girlfriend in the car,” she says. “The person was swaying driving and I remember we hit either some garbage or a mailbox. When we got to my condo, she walked me to the door and tried something on with me. She was trying to kiss me. I was so sickened that I was crawling up the stairs inside trying not to throw up so my dad wouldn’t see me.”
Jaeger then confided in someone at the WTA about the incident and was threatened if she continued speaking about it.
“I said this has got to stop. Every week I have to worry about this s***,” she says. “They said if you say one more word about this, we’ll make sure your sister’s scholarship at Stanford gets pulled. Every time I tried to stand up for myself, I was threatened with someone else getting harmed.
“Do you know how hard it is to tell an adult in an industry that there’s a problem, how much courage that took? My parents were owed the right that if you put a kid on the court late at night or you’re going to have a WTA Tour representative drive them home, they’re going to be safe. They were owed that right and never got that right.”
Following her retirement from tennis, Jaeger founded the “Little Star Foundation,” which provides care for children with cancer and children in need.