The often derided Richard Williams was prophetic when he declared that his daughters would be #1 and #2. Tennis media, players and even fans jeered and mocked him. Today it is clear that, though his character can be questioned and his childhood tales are a stretch to believe, his preparation and guidance of his daughters with the often unacknowledged assistance of his then wife, Oracene, is to be hailed.
James Blake, tennis commentator and Miami Open Tournament Director, was asked on Tennis Channel if Richard Williams should be inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame, his equivocation was astounding. No doubt, Blake would vote for Patrick Mouratoglou, who coached Serena after she had achieved thirteen grand slams. For Blake, Mourgatoglou is a proper coach and Williams is not. Richard and Oracene Williams are worthy of Hall of Fame induction whenever they are ready to accept.
Williams’ 2014 memoir, Black and White: The Way I See It, and the 78-page blueprint he prepared in 1980, describing how Venus and Serena would reach the top, are part of his legacy. Serena and Venus are what we will all truly remember, and that is more than enough!
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