Bid On VIP Annacone Lesson To Support Coaches In Need
Paul Annacone, who climbed as high as No. 12 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, has worked with a wide variety of players during his coaching career, from former World No. 1s Pete Sampras and Roger Federer to British legend Tim Henman, rising American Taylor Fritz and WTA star Sloane Stephens. With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting members of the ATP Coach Programme whose ability to work has been impacted by the virus, Annacone is giving back.
The American is one of 10 legendary coaches offering an exclusive fan experience in a special auction, which will benefit coaches in need and a global COVID-19 relief fund. Stan Wawrinka’s coach, Daniel Vallverdu, approached Annacone with the idea. Other coaches involved include former World No. 1s Boris Becker, Ivan Lendl and Carlos Moya.
“Dani just told me what he was trying to do, which was great, and really a very worthwhile cause,” Annacone said. “We’re just trying to help out a lot of the coaches who haven’t had any work, who are just kind of setting out [on their career]. I said, 'Sure, that’s great.’”
The experience Annacone is offering will be at the 2021 BNP Paribas Open. The winning bidder and a guest will enjoy a two-hour lesson with Annacone. They will also get two premium tickets for both the men’s and women’s singles finals, as well as exclusive access to VIP hospitality at the tournament.
Annacone is more than happy to contribute to help his colleagues.
“We’re all in kind of our own brotherhood and sisterhood, being people who guide young players toward their career goals. We’re all in the same boat together,” Annacone said. “I think it’s important to try to appreciate your own situation and help the others who aren’t in a situation as good as you when you can, because we’re all trying to do the same thing. These are my peers and a lot of them I know very well. They’re a terrific group of people, so it’ll be good to be able to help, at least a little bit.”
The highest bid for Annacone’s package so far is $5,000. The deadline is 29 June, and he hopes to raise as much money as possible to support those in need.
“I think people forget it’s an individual sport, but those individuals need coaches. There are a lot of individual coaches who are out there who are independent contractors that have been really struggling. A lot of them are family men and women who are trying to take care of their families and they haven’t been able to do it,” Annacone said. “It’s really important to be able to help our family members out; our family being our tennis community family, and this is one way where we can participate.”
Did You Know?
Fans can also enter one of several prize draws to support this cause. Prizes up for grabs include tickets to the 2021 Nitto ATP Finals and autographed racquets from Stan Wawrinka, Alexander Zverev and Grigor Dimitrov. Learn More