Tennis: Radwanska dropped by Catholic youth over nude spread

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Agnieszka Radwanska AP FILE PHOTO

WARSAW — World number four Agnieszka Radwanska has been dropped by a Catholic youth movement in her native Poland for posing nude in the “Body Issue” of ESPN Magazine.

Radwanska, 24, who makes no secret of her strong Catholic faith, is photographed in profile without a stitch, sitting in a lawn chair by a pool filled with tennis balls.

While not explicit, the nude has proven too much for a Catholic group known as Krucjata Mlodych (Youth Crusade), which runs a campaign dubbed “I’m not ashamed of Jesus.”

The young Catholics, who claim more than a million followers, dropped Radwanska last week for what they said was “immoral behavior” in the ESPN spread, which can be seen at espn.go.com/espn/bodyissue.

This year’s beaten Wimbledon semi-finalist previously appeared in a television commercial sponsored by the group in which she spelled out the word “Jesus” with tennis balls and urged young Poles not to be ashamed of their faith.

Other athletes in the buff in the special issue include Puerto Rican motocross champ Tarah Gieger and nine-time major golf champion Gary Player, the oldest model at 77.

Home to the former pope, John Paul II, Poland remains one of Europe’s most devout nations.

More than 90 percent of the population declares itself Roman Catholic.

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