Retired tennis ace Martina Navratilova has been forced to abandon her bid to climb to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro after she was hospitalized four days into her journey. The nine-time Wimbledon champion embarked on the challenge as part of a 27-strong team on Monday, December 6 to raise funds for the Laureus World Sports Academy, which uses sport to aid positive social change.
But the breast cancer survivor was taken ill on Thursday, December 9 and admitted to Nairobi Hospital in Kenya, suffering from high altitude pulmonary oedema - fluid in the lungs. Her hospitalization forced the 54 year old to put her dreams of reaching the African peak on hold indefinitely - and Navratilova is saddened.
She says, "I'm disappointed not to be able to complete this amazing journey. It was something that I have wanted to do for so long, but it was not to be. I am so pleased that we got it going and I will be watching and waiting for news from the climb when they reach the summit."
The climbers are expected to achieve their goal on Saturday, December 11.