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Richard Williams: The controversial figure behind Will Smith's Oscar win


Will Smith was the main talking point at the Oscars as he slapped Chris Rock in the face after the comedian made a joke about the actor’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

He later went on to accept the award for Best Actor for his role as Richard Williams, the father of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams, in ‘King Richard‘.

Williams was a controversial figure who moulded his daughters into two of the greatest players in tennis history.

He controlled the lives of his daughters in an obsessive way after deciding that they would both be the best tennis players in the world before they were born.

Richard Williams: The controversial figure behind Will Smith's Oscar win

Richard Williams: His plan for his daughters to reach the top

Everything changed for Williams when he saw Virginia Ruzici win 40,000 dollars for her triumph at Roland Garros in 1978.

A few hours later, he told his wife that they were going to have two more children and that they were going to be tennis players.

He then began to write up the ‘Williams Plan‘, a 78-page document which outlined how they were going to achieve this.

His obsession saw him move his family to Compton, one of the most violent parts of the United States, and he was left with broken ribs after being beaten up by gang members for training in parks that they had claimed as their own for drug trafficking.

Rick Macci: The next stage of the plan

The plan was following its established route until Williams met Rick Macci, who would become the coach of Venus and Serena at the start of their careers.

Williams and Macci became best friends, and Macci has always defended him.

“He understood sport and his obsession was to make them professionals,” he told the BBC.

“But you know something above all else? Richard was an incredible father.”

According to Macci, Williams‘ priority was to protect his daughters, and to that end he made them strong to face a world of pressure and racism.

He made them bulletproof, as they would go on to dominate tennis for almost two decades, sharing 30 Grand Slam titles between them.

This was down to their father, and the dream that he had before they were born.





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