Margaret Court has said tennis today is easier than her era ©Getty Images

Women's singles Grand Slam record-holder Margaret Court has called professional tennis in 2022 easier than her time as a player, during the ongoing US Open. 

She added that she does not believe Serena Williams - who recently seemed to retire from professional tennis at Flushing Meadows - admired her as a player.

Speaking to the Telegraph, the 24-time Grand Slam winner said she would have enjoyed playing today as a professional, partly due to the extra support.

Court also criticised athletes today, suggesting they do not respect the elders of tennis.

"I would love to have played in this era; I think it's so much easier," said Court.

"How I would love to have taken family or friends along with me, but I couldn't, I had to go on my own or with the national team.

"People don't see all that. 

"As amateurs, we had to play every week, because we didn't have any money. 

"Now, they can take off whenever they want, fly back whenever they want.

"We would be away for 10 months, that's why I first retired in 1965, because I used to get homesick. 

"You might be with the odd other person, but it's not like having your family there.

"We didn't have psychologists or coaches with us. 

"It's a whole different world. 

"That's what disappoints me; that players today don't honour the past of the game."

Margaret Court said she admired Serena Williams, but did not believe that feeling was mutual ©Getty Images
Margaret Court said she admired Serena Williams, but did not believe that feeling was mutual ©Getty Images

Court's first seven Australian Open titles were won by playing five or less matches compared to the seven at Grand Slams today.

Most of these tournaments consisted of home players, with the sport more international today.

Speaking on Williams - who won 23 Grand Slams during the Open Era - Court said she admired the American, but did not believe that feeling was reciprocated. 

"Serena, I've admired her as a player, but I don't think she has ever admired me," she added.

Court is regarded as a controversial figure in tennis, widely criticised for her homophobic and transphobic views.

Now a Pentecostal Minister, Court has been a long-time opponent of same-sex marriage, and previously a supporter of apartheid in South Africa, leading to fellow tennis player Martina Navratilova to call her a "racist and homophobe".

As a result, there have been calls to rename the Margaret Court Arena at the Australian Open.