Coach Rick Macci tells how he knew 'sonic boom' Sofia Kenin was unbelievable talent
by DZEVAD MESIC | VIEW 2723
Coach Rick Macci said Sofia Kenin "was the scariest little creature he ever taught" as he was heavily impressed by the American's on-court intelligence, strength, and timing at a very young age. As a promising girl, Kenin won the Orange Bowl and finished as the runner-up in the 2015 US Open girls' singles event.
At the age of 21, Kenin lifted her first Grand Slam title at the 2020 Australian Open and she also finished as runner-up at the 2020 French Open. Macci, who was also the childhood coach of Serena and Venus Williams, quickly realized Kenin was a very special talent.
Even as a little girl, Kenin was showing signs of being a very intelligent tennis player.
Macci on how he knew Kenin was a special talent
“I called her 'sonic boom.' She was the scariest little creature I ever taught.
I usually didn't teach people that young. I do now. At age 5-12, I had her. She understood the geometry of the court. She cut the court. She wasn't gonna play like Venus or Serena, but she knew what was going on. The way she took that ball right off the rise left you surprised, 'Where are your eyes?' She had the best timing.
She had one of the best drop shots ever. We practiced that 24/7," Macci said on the Unfiltered Tennis podcast, per Sportskeeda. Shortly after reaching back-to-back Grand Slam finals in 2020, Kenin started experiencing problems with injuries.
Kenin is now ranked at No 138 in the world as she has yet to rediscover her best tennis after returning from a lengthy injury break. Coach Macci is confident that Kenin has the game to again be a top player. "I think she'll get back on track.
You don't lose the talent. You don't lose the ability. You lose the confidence, maybe you lose the fitness, there's an injury along the way so it can be a little more tricky," Macci said.