Billie Jean King and Megan Rapinoe among women sports stars to pay tribute to legendary basketball player Kobe Bryant after tragic helicopter accident killed NBA star and daughter along with seven others

Gianna and Kobe Bryant have both had their jersies 'retired' by their respective teams (Twitter: @kobebryant)
12:50pm, Mon 27 Jan 2020
CBAD8A00-D2B9-4E0E-ADDF-D0366C357A34 Created with sketchtool. E9A4AA46-7DC3-48B8-9CE2-D75274FB8967 Created with sketchtool. 65CCAE04-4748-4D0F-8696-A91D8EB3E7DC Created with sketchtool.

Some of the world's top sportswomen have taken to social media to pay tribute to Kobe Bryant,41, after he and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna along with seven others were killed in a helicopter accident near Los Angeles on Sunday.

Billie Jean King

The tennis legend posted a photo of herself with the NBA star.

Megan Rapinoe

US World Cup winning soccer star wrote: "Heart going out to the Bryant family right now. RIP."

Rachel Burford

The England and Harlequins rugby player reacted to the 'shocking news'.

Alex Morgan

The pregnant US soccer player said: "My heart is heavy with the news of Kobe Bryant", adding that her "prayers go out to his family."

Naomi Osaka

The former WTA World No 1 wrote a heartfelt tribute.

Simone Biles

American gymnastics star Biles posted a picture of the American gymnastics team with the legend.

Garbine Mugaruza

The Spanish tennis player took time from the Australian Open to share a photo with the caption 'live life to the fullest'.

Heather Hardy

Bellator fighter Hardy described the news as 'devastating'.

Claressa Shields

Along with re-tweeting multiple messages of love, the heavyweight boxer said she was in her room crying. She added "I shed tears for the wife."

Lucy Bronze

The English football star simply wrote "Kobe" accompanied by a black heart and a broken heart.

Kim Clijsters

Tennis legend Clijsters paid tribute saying: "Kobe - you were a true inspiration to me as an athlete. I always admired your professionalism, drive and dedication. Our thoughts are with your loved ones. RIP." 

Coco Gauff and Caty McNally

The American doubles duo paid their respects in their doubles match at the Australian Open, writing "Kobe" and "Mambo mentality" on their tennis shoes.

They also shared a tweet dedicating their victory to the superstar.

Lindsay Vonn

Vonn, who recently retired from competitive skiing, shared her 'deepest condolences to the surviving families'.

Sign up to our newsletter