Legendary tennis coach Nick Bollettieri, who helped develop superstars corresponding to Andre Agassi and Maria Sharapova, has died aged 91, the IMG Academy introduced in an announcement on Monday.
“Nick Bollettieri, the legendary tennis coach and founding father of Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy, which served as the inspiration for at present’s IMG Academy, has handed away,” learn the assertion.
The AP studies Bollettieri died at house in Florida after a collection of well being points, in accordance his supervisor, Steve Shulla.
It comes after Shulla was final month compelled to difficulty an announcement denying untimely studies of Bollettieri’s dying.
Whereas his strategies had been typically controversial, his academy in Florida churned out prime gamers and he was to teach 10 gamers who would go on to change into primary on the earth.
Monica Seles, Jim Courier, Anna Kournikova and Mary Pierce had been different stars who handed by way of his Bradenton advanced.
Bollettieri additionally suggested Venus and Serena Williams and Boris Becker. “Tennis wouldn’t be the place it’s at present with out Nick’s affect,” stated Jimmy Arias, IMG Academy director of tennis and one among Bollettieri’s unique college students.
“His tennis academy, which I had the privilege of rising up inside, not solely served as a launching pad for a lot of tennis greats however developed into an establishment that has had a profound influence on the event of athletes throughout many sports activities in any respect ranges.” Bollettieri based the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy — now IMG Academy — in 1978 with a concentrate on intense bodily coaching, complete immersion, and ongoing competitors among the many most gifted gamers on the earth.
His enthusiasm for teaching continued nearly proper as much as the top. “Even in his final days, you could possibly typically discover him on campus, teaching and mentoring younger student-athletes and workers with the identical ardour and enthusiasm as he did in his 20s,” stated Tim Pernetti, President of IMG Academy Bradenton, a division of IMG Academy.
“Our coronary heart goes out to his spouse, Cindi, and his youngsters. He has made a everlasting and lasting influence on all of us.”
Tommy Haas — a four-time Grand Slam semi-finalist and world quantity two — posted a shifting tribute to the Korean Battle veteran.
“So many recollections, I’m not certain the place to start,” posted the 44-year-old on Instagram.
“Nickiiii, that’s how i’ve referred to as you for the longest time.
“Thanks on your time, data, dedication, experience, the willingness to share your ability, your private curiosity in mentoring me, and giving me the very best alternative to comply with my desires.
“You had been a dreamer and a doer, and a pioneer in our sport, actually one among a form.”
American tennis nice Brad Gilbert additionally wrote on Twitter: “RIP Nick. You had been an absolute big who helped generations of gamers”.