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38th Anniversary of the Battle of the Sexes: Where were you when…..

On Sept. 20, 1973, before a crowd of more than 30,000 at the Houston Astrodome, WSF Founder Billie Jean King beat Bobby Riggs 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 in a match dubbed “The Battle of the Sexes.” Played just a year after the passage of “Title IX,” an amendment to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the match helped legitimize women’s athletics and encouraged girls to take up sports. Yesterday was the 38th anniversary of the Battle of the Sexes and, to honor the occasion, we asked our fans on Facebook to share their memories of the momentous event. The best comments are below:

Kathy Wilson: “I heard about it via the adults who watched it on TV and remember thinking “ALL RIGHT !!!!!! Way to go BJK !!!!” I was 6, only knew that she was a tennis player and that she handled the win with dignity and grace. She (and Bade Didrikson Zaharias) quickly became one of my heroes !! Thanks for everything you’ve done for female athletes, Ms. King. Those of us who competed really do appreciate all of your efforts, on and off the field.”

Jo Murto: “I was 10. My younger sister and I were the only kids in the room filled with several adults. BJK became an immediate role model to me. Eventually, tennis was my ticket to college. Television allowed me to see someone who looked like me competing.”

Anne Lisa: “ I was in 6th grade, and my class made a movie about this in the park across the street from our school. Being a theater buff, I played Billie Jean King… not much of an athlete, much to my parents’ dismay (my dad coached every sport on the planet!), but this was one of the memories I’ll never forget…. nor the school!! Must have had some effect on me, as I’m a die-hard feminist to this day, and it’s rubbed off on my daughter as well! Never give in to the men, I say… especially when they tell you there is a glass ceiling. This was not about sports… no matter what they say. Here’s to BJK – you scored one for all of us!!!”

Sarah Lemire: “She’s my hero for all that she’s accomplished. Women in golf and tennis now get equal pay. Too bad the Winter Olympics denied Female Ski Jumpers for so long. We still have a long way to go!”

Constance H. Halporn: “One of the most exciting sports events I ever watched. I had my Billie Jean Moffitt tennis racket. She was my inspiration.”

B J Sklar Rego: “It was a great 20th birthday present. I started playing tennis when I was 5, and Billie Jean was my idol as soon as I saw her play. Lucky enough to meet her a couple of times. We girls/women owe so much to BJK…still a great role model.”