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Venus Williams could have been the "best player of all time" instead of sister Serena: Rick Macci

(L-R) Venus Williams, Serena Williams and Rick Macci
(L-R) Venus Williams, Serena Williams and Rick Macci
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Ewan West

Esteemed coach Rick Macci has revealed he believes Venus Williams could have been the greatest player ever and won more Major titles than anyone, including sister Serena Williams. The American feels the physical gifts Venus Williams had were not fully utilized, despite her stellar career.

The Williams family moved to Florida when Venus Williams was 10 so she and Serena could receive coaching from Macci at his tennis academy.

Venus Williams has won seven Grand Slam singles titles, while Serena Williams sits second on the all-time women's singles list with 23 Major crowns.

The legendary sisters, who turned professional in the mid-1990s, continue to compete on the professional tour into their 40s. Venus, 41, is currently ranked 316th in the WTA rankings, while 40-year-old Serena is World No. 41.

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In an interview with Essentially Sports, Macci described the differences he saw between the sisters during his early experiences with them.

"As a youngster growing up, Venus was obviously bigger, stronger," Macci said. "But more importantly, she was more 'stick to it', she was more mature. Serena when she was little, she was like a little prankster. She was a happy-go-lucky kid, she wasn't like locked in at that age yet. So it's not where you start, it's where you finish."

The 67-year-old then admitted the promise Venus Williams displayed in her youth made him think she would be better than her younger sister, and perhaps anyone in the history of the women's game.

"So yeah, Venus was much, much better you know [at] 11, 12, 13," Macci continued." When Serena started maturing, that's when Richard [Williams] would say even more - 'I think Serena is gonna be better'. Now, I always thought Venus could have been the best player of all time."

"I thought Venus Williams was going to play a different style" - Rick Macci

Venus Williams hits a backhand at the 2021 Wimbledon Championships
Venus Williams hits a backhand at the 2021 Wimbledon Championships

Rick Macci went on to explain why he felt Venus Williams could have been the best player of all time, highlighting her outstanding physical attributes.

"I always thought Venus was going to serve and come in more, a little bit," Macci said. "Take your second serve, smack it in the corner, get in your face. Her vertical jump, she can jump higher than anybody on the tour, you cannot lob this girl. And she has a great wingspan. But the problem is you never saw her at the net that much. I thought she was going to play different."

The American further analyzed how he felt Williams could have played in a different way, while saying he did not think her unique qualities were fully exploited.

"With those gifts from above that Serena didn't have, that amazing jumping ability and wingspan, I thought Venus would be up at the net, in your face," Macci added. "Even if you don't volley, especially in women's tennis you can just scare people. So I thought she was going to play a different style. So I really believe that Venus could have won more Grand Slams than anybody. Her gifts from above, I don't think were taken advantage of."

Also Check Out: Updated Tennis Schedule 2022


Edited by Nihal Taraporvala
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