Mary Pierce's father has died at 81 age

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Mary Pierce's father has died at 81 age

In Roanne, where the Fed Cup tie between France and Spain is taking place, there won't be Mary Pierce, Yannick Noah's assistant. On Friday her father Jim, 81 years old, died after a long illness. Mary was next to him until the end, after that during her career on the WTA tour her relationship with him wasn't so good.

At the 1992 Roland Garros Jim was involved in a fight with a fan, while a few years before in an under 12 tournament he had told his daughter to "kill" her opponent, described as a "bitch". Those were only some reasons why WTA did not allow him to attend any official match anymore.

Also, Yannick, Mary's mother, had hired a bodyguard to protect her daughter, asking him to use false names when they were in hotels. This decision had a positive effect on Mary's career, as she won 1995 Australian Open and 2000 Roland Garros singles titles.

She was also World No. 3. Jim's personality outside the tennis environment wasn't good either: he was accused of fraudolent acts, jewelry heists and forging cheques. But getting closer to his daughter again helped his image: on Tuesday there will be a memorial in his honor in Florida.

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