Former World No. 13 Raul Pérez Roldan, who is now 50 years old, has revealed that he was physically abused by his father, who was also his coach, in an interview to La Nacion.
Raul Pérez Roldan says his father used to hit him after matches and also took away all his money
During his interview, the Argentine recalled the difficult journey he had through his professional career and later due to his parents.
"The truth is that. Everyone knows, but nobody talks about it, I never told a journalist. But it was like that. When I finished playing I had to ask my grandmother for money to rent a place. I am in peace with myself, happy with my wife, my children, my friends, my job.
But it is hard. I had a difficult life. I move on. I feel sorry for them, for my parents and my sister. The betrayal of a father to a son is terrible. When I married Daniela, three and a half years ago, I invited him to the party, he asked for forgiveness in front of everyone and he sang me a song, but the next day he screwed me up again.
I train four hours a day because I know that after this virus, I have to go back to work and keep on living. I am 50 years old and I have more desire to live than ever" "If I really talk about it all I would have to talk, for instance, about the time I lost a game, went into a room and was punched in the middle of the mouth with his fist.
Or the times he hit me with the belt or put my head in the toilet. Or about the robbery of four or five million dollars. Everything I earned playing tennis, was gone the next day. My mother and my father took all the money out of my accounts"
The Argentine says he is sharing his story now so that others may not have to go through what he did. "Since my third son I don't care anymore. I like to make it public so no other boys lives something like this again, so they gain the courage I did not have."
Raul Pérez Roldan reached the final of the Italian Open in 1988 as a teenager, where he lost to Ivan Lendl. He went on to win nine career titles during his career, winning over $1.6 million in prize money. In the early 1990s, his career was derailed by several injuries and he retired from tennis in 1996.