Patrick Mouratoglou: 'Serena Williams will surprise me once again'

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Patrick Mouratoglou: 'Serena Williams will surprise me once again'

Serena Williams has not confirmed anything yet, but more and more sources and authorities like WTA CEO Steve Simon have given assurances that the 23-time Grand Slam champion will compete again at the 2018 Australian Open. In an exclusive interview to Sky Sports Italy in his academy near Nice, her coach Patrick Mouratoglou also added his thoughts about Serena's comeback to tennis. 'I know she will surprise me in the future. I know that coming back to win a Grand Slam after having a baby, at 36 years old, is a huge, huge bet. So I am sure she will surprise me once again,' the French coach said.

He also recalled the start of his association with the American player, in May 2012, just after her loss to Virginie Razzano in the first round of the French Open. A month-and-a-half later, Serena would win Wimbledon, despite many difficulties: 'When I met her father [Richard Williams] for the first time it was difficult. He was really tough for me, but I understand his story, I understand that he did an incredibile work with his two daughters. From zero he made them both the world no. 1, which is something incredible. And suddenly with one of his daughters, at 30 years old, a French guy comes and takes his job. I went to him, and it was a fight. But I understand, he didn't want to give his  daughter to any coach like that. I had a good reputation, but he wanted to understand if I was the good person or not. So after her first round or second win (in Wimbledon), which was a very tough match, she won 7-5 in the third set, we got to the fitness centre of Wimbledon, her father came to me and said: "What happened? Why did she play so bad?" I replied, "You ask me why Serena played like that, but you have been working with her for 30 years. I have been working for only three days. You should know why she played this, not me." After that, we had a very good relationship.'

He finally commented on Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal's dominant season: 'I am used to incredibile things with Serena, but these guys have really done something incredible and no one expected (this). Especially wlth Roger, because Roger had been trying for so long to win a Grand Slam. Everybody thought he was too old, this could never happen. That's one of the most incredibile things I have seen.'

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