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Nick Bollettieri's Biography

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Tennis coach, Nick Bollettieri was born in North Pelham, New York, in 1931.

Bollettieri did not play tennis until his junior year in college. He told The Times that:

"Before that I thought tennis was for sissies. By senior year, I’d made the team. Then I joined the paratroopers and was out of action for two and a half years. After that, I went to law school and started coaching tennis on Miami beach to pay for my books. This was 1955 so I was getting $3 for half an hour."

When Bollettieri started to coach tennis he initially struggled but a friend lent him a million dollars that enabled him to set up the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy in Florida in 1978.

The Academy was a full-time tennis boarding school which prepares young students for college coupled with intense tennis training. It also does part-time training.

Bollettieri coached many of the world's leading tennis players, including Andre Agassi, Monica Seles, Jim Courier, Anna Kournikova and Maria Sharapova.

In an interview with The Observer, Bollettieri said of Sharapova:

"Maria's dad brought her to me when she was 10. It wasn't immediately apparent that she was going to be a world-beater, but what she did have was tremendous dedication..."

Nick Bollettieri was married eight times.

He died in December 2022, aged 91.

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