Serena Williams news: Legendary coach recalls brilliant anecdote about training a young Serena

Tennis News
Venus Williams and Serena Williams in 1999

Serena Williams’ former coach Rick Macci has walked down memory lane, looking back on his time coaching the Williams sisters.

Following a friendship with Richard Williams, [Venus and Serena’s father] in early 1991, Macci became the first coach of Venus and Serena and played a big role in their careers.

Both Venus and Serena went on to reach No 1 in the world while Macci’s coaching career continued to flourish as he trained five No 1 ranked players – including Andy Roddick, Jennifer Capriati, Maria Sharapova, Serena and Venus.

In an interview on his official Youtube channel, the 67-year-old Macci explained how Serena got distracted once.

“It was July 1992, I was on the court with Serena [Williams] and Venus [Williams] was next door. Serena was standing in the corner and just running the clock out,” he recalled.

“You have to remember that she was 11 years old, I said to her, Serena, ‘you got to move your feet.’ She goes, ‘Why?’ I said, ‘What do you mean why? You said you want to be No 1 in the world.’ She says, ‘I will be No 1’ and she gave me [a] look.”

He continued: “So I go, ‘Well, how can I get you to move your feet?’ She says, ‘Rick, I am really, really hungry. Can you get Scott to get me some hot curly fries, a Snickers bar, a Pepsi and on the way back pick up a Green Day t-shirt? If you get me all that, I will make [Venus] look slower than molasses’.”

And just like that Serena was transformed.

He added: “So Scott gets all the goodies [except for the t-shirt], Serena has all her snacks for 15 minutes and goes back into the corner with her hitting partner. For an hour straight, no water. Sweat is coming off this kid like Niagara falls. Ripping groundstrokes, cross-court, down the line. Just like a maniac.”

The story of Williams family made it onto the big screens last year as the King Richard biographical drama hit theatres, but the legendary Macci feels their live should have been documented more in movies.

The American is a seven-time United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) national coach of the year.

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