Tennis

Patrick Mouratoglou 'proud' of Coco Gauff and Serena Williams on Black Lives Matter

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Cori Gauff and Serena Williams

Image credit: Getty Images

ByDan Quarrell
17/06/2020 at 16:14 | Updated 18/06/2020 at 12:50
@Dan_Eurosport

Patrick Mouratoglou has expressed his pride in Coco Gauff and Serena Williams for the way they have taken a stand in the Black Lives Matter movement.

Mouratoglou, speaking to Eurosport's Mats Wilander and Australian star Alexei Popyrin as part of the Tennis Legends vodcast, spoke of his overwhelming sense of pride at how the pair - who he has coached and worked with for many years - had used their profiles to help affect positive change.

Both players have been active advocates of the Black Lives Matter movement, and the 16-year-old Gauff gave a moving, powerful speech at a Black Lives Matter protest in Delray Beach, south Florida earlier this month.

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Mouratoglou said he was proud to be associated with the two American women and what they have been doing in urging change and speaking out about racial injustice.

Patrick Mouratoglou: It is our responsibility to support Black Lives Matter as much as we can

00:05:45

"Serena especially, coming from a tough neighbourhood, the whole Williams family, she had to go through a lot of difficulties, much more than someone who is wealthy and white," Mouratoglou said on the vodcast.

"I am proud of Coco, because she is 16 and the way she has been able to support this cause at only 16 years old. I don’t know whether you saw that speech that she made.

She is from another planet, really! I have never seen somebody like this. I am so proud of them!

Watch Coco Gauff's speech about George's Floyd death

00:02:19

"I think it is a problem that has existed forever, racism. Of course, things have gotten better hopefully, because that was completely inhuman. But we are in 2020 and to be still where we are, I think it is a bit depressing," he continued.

"In some countries of course, it is worse than others, but racism is still happening in every country. At the moment there is a movement, and I feel that it is our responsibility to support it as much as we can.

"Because we can make a difference. We have fans, we as personalities or we throughout organisations, we have exposure, and I think that all the people that want to stand against racism have a responsibility - and if we don’t do anything, in a way we’re also saying something. We are saying we don’t care, or we don’t want to be involved.

I don’t think it is a good thing not to be involved, because it is about humans; it is about who we are all of us and it is easy to stay back and not to be involved when you are not personally touched, but you also have to think about others that are not in the same situation as us and have to suffer from it.

"I was having lunch with the father of Coco Gauff in Delray Beach, where they come from, and he was telling me, 'you see this street here? When I was a kid, I wasn’t allowed to cross that street because I was black and that was the line'.

Patrick Mouratoglou and Corey Gauff applaud Cori Gauff

Image credit: Getty Images

"This was in Florida, some 30 years ago. We have to realise that, and it is easy to forget and not to look at it, but I think we should."

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