Venus & Serena’s Father, Richard Williams, To Be Inducted Into Tennis Hall Of Fame
Richard Williams, tennis superstars Serena and Venus’ father, will be inducted into the American Tennis Association’s Tennis Hall of Fame for his contribution to coaching his famous daughters.
Male or female, Serena Williams is the greatest athlete of all time and has to be included on any short list of the greatest athletes ever, right up there with Babe Ruth and Jesse Owens, Sandy Koufax and Jim Brown, Muhammad Ali and Michael Jordan, Jackie Stewart and Pele.
And Richard Williams’s coaching of his daughters is pretty epic too.
The Williams sisters have 30 grand slam singles titles each. They played each other in the finals nine times. They also have 17 doubles titles playing together in only 33 major appearances along with three gold medals in Olympic doubles.
Now, even for the most competitive players in sports today, those results are still remarkable. Especially considering their backstory: As a former sharecropper, Richard Williams saw a tennis match on TV and was shocked at the size of the check being handed to the winner. So, as a middle aged black man, he decided to teach himself this remarkably complex game. He then wrote a 78-page plan, scrounged a shopping cart full of balls and taught his youngest daughters the game a whole two years before they were even born.
That is nothing short of a miracle.
Williams was a controversial figure in the tennis world, where his unorthodox teaching methods, tough love discipline and unapologetic blackness often rubbed the world of tennis the wrong way. But you can’t argue with his results. His methods worked, and his daughters still impacted the tennis game despite being some of the oldest players on the women’s circuit. Not to mention, it was also found that Serena won her last match while she was pregnant.
How’s that for Black girl magic?
Williams, now 75, had a stroke in summer 2016, shortly before Williams’s sister Serena won Wimbledon. He had not seen either of them play in person for about a year, since he accompanied…