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‘Give It a Try’ – Years After Gifting the WTA With One of Its GOATS, Serena Williams’ Childhood Coach Makes a Bizarre Proposal to End Long-Standing Pay Disparity in Tennis

Published 09/07/2023, 9:21 AM EDT

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From fighting for equal pay to creating a one-of-a-kind association in the seventies, women’s tennis has always been a step ahead. But even after bringing about a lot of change, there is one age-old debacle that is still going on in the women’s and men’s categories. While Serena Williams and her sister, Venus, did their best to bridge this gap, it remains an issue to this day. Thus, her former coach ignited the debate surrounding the same once again.

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The 23-time Grand Slam champion’s childhood coach, Rick Macci, recently shared a unique suggestion to eliminate pay disparity in tennis. Let’s take a look at what the 68-year-old tennis coach has to say about bringing about a change in women’s tennis.

Serena Williams’ childhood coach brings a new angle to an age-old tennis debate 

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If you are a tennis fan, you might have heard of this query about why women play only three-set matches while the men play five-set matches. It is one of the age-old debates existing in the tennis world. Now, years after training one of the GOATs, Williams sisters’ childhood coach, shared a different angle on the debacle.

Macci took to his Twitter account to share his out-of-the-blue suggestion regarding whether women should play five-set matches. He wrote, “Should the women play best of 5 sets at the Slams? My take is it would the best thing in many ways. More action more drama more mental development and more physical preparation. The Wildcard is it would silence equal prize money critics about the Men play more. Give it a try.” 

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While he made a positive statement regarding how he wants women’s tennis to have five-sets at various Grand Slam tournaments, he also shared the reason behind his answer. Macci stated that somewhere down the line, with this change, the tennis circuit can also have equal pay without any further questions in any of the categories.

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Nevertheless, a lot of other players, including Serena Williams and Stefanos Tsitsipas, have voiced a similar opinion regarding the five-set play.

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When Serena and Tsitsipas voiced similar opinions

The 41-year-old American tennis legend, back in 2009 and on other occasions throughout her tennis career, has clearly stated her stand regarding how she was ready to play 5-set matches. In addition, she also highlighted how dismissing the equal pay debate over such arguments is baseless.

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Apart from the former world number one ranked tennis player, the 25-year-old ATP star, Tsitsipas, last year at the Miami Open, talked about how he believes women should go for it. Subsequently, he also highlighted that if men follow the best of three version, the Grand Slam tournaments can witness a variety of male champions.

What do you think about Williams’ childhood coach’s take on women being allowed to play five-setters? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Pratishtha Prakash

1574 articles

Pratishtha Prakash is a Tennis writer at EssentiallySports. She has completed her Bachelor’s degree in Mass Media and Journalism from MIT ADT University, Pune. Being a sports enthusiast, she has been following varied sports like tennis, cricket and Esports from her childhood.

Edited By: Tony Thomas

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