Tennis player Billie Jean King was honoured with the life achievement award.

One of the greatest female tennis players ever, Even the American, won 39 Grand Slam titles in singles and doubles competitions.

King won the Battle of the Sexes match against Bobby Riggs and is an advocate for gender equality.

She is also the creator of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA).

“We all stand on the shoulders of those that came before us we all have an chance to share our own lives, our adventures and our vision for the future,” King explained.

“Each of us is an influencer, and to most of the athletes who have a stage, let us carry on to utilize the ability of our voices and our actions to inspire others.”

Speaking from Miami, three-time Sports Personality of the season Andy Murray said that she”was one of many most useful of all time on the court”, however that her achievements away from the court proved even more impressive.

“She has been a enormous advocate for women’s rights and equal rights and I presume that’s interpreted into tennisunlike a number of other sports,” he said.

“We’ve pretty equal prize money across the adult men’s and women’s tours, and that’s very important. She advocated for that probably 30-40 years ahead of her time which is one of the very notable things.

“She is somebody who stood up for what she believed. Eventually our game has shifted for the better by doing that, although I imagine at that time she moved through a lot. More athletes should simply take her lead.”

IE]>Billie Jean King at BBC Sports Personality of the Year

King turned professional in 1959 and gained recognition when she and Karen Hantze Susman became the youngest pair to secure the women’s doubles title at Wimbledon.

She retained her Wimbledon titles in 1967 and 1968 – the years in which she also won her first US Open and Australian Open singles titles .

In total, King won a record 13 US Open in addition to 20 Wimbledon titles, two Australian Open crowns and four Open between 1979 and 1961. She collected three Grand Slam titles in one year in 1972.

129 singles titles were also won by her . She won seven Fed Cups because the captain of the US team as a person and four.

King retired from tennis at 1983.

IE]>Graphic depicting Billie Jean King's Grand Slam wins