NEW YORK, NY – Eighty-one year-old Nick Bollettieri was inducted into the Tennis Industry Hall of Fame on Friday night at the Grand Hyatt by former pupil an current ESPN TV tennis analyst Brad Gilbert. Bollettieri has coached 10 former world No. 1 players including Andre Agassi, Boris Becker, Jim Courier, Martina Hingis, Jelena Jankovic, Marcelo Rios, Monica Seles, Maria Sharapova, Serena Williams and Venus Williams. His academy – The Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy was founded in 1978.
He is coming out with autobiography in November called It Ainâ€™t Easy.
Bollettieri joins previous Tennis Industry Hall of Fame inductees Howard Head (2008), Dennis Van der Meer (2008), Alan Schwartz (2009), and Billie Jean King (2010). Plaques of Tennis Industry Hall of Fame inductees are on permanent display at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, R.I.
Here are excerpts from Brad Gilbertâ€™s introduction of Bollettieri and the coachâ€™s induction speech.
Karen Pestaina for Tennis Panorama News