Saturday, 12 May 2018

Trump offered me $1m to play Serena or Venus--John McEnroe

Tennis great John McEnroe has revealed that Donald Trump was willing to pay $1 million in 1998 to play one of the Williams sisters.
McEnroe speaking on “In Depth with Graham Bensinger,” revealed that 20 years ago, the not-yet-president then offered him a decent chunk of change to play either Serena Williams or Venus Williams.
According to McEnroe, he got an envelope while he was calling a match in 1998. It was from Donald Trump, who McEnroe was definitely aware of at the time — he called Trump a “promoter galore.” McEnroe remembers the general gist of the letter.
“‘Dear John, I want to offer you $1 million to play either Serena or Venus.'”
In 1998, the sisters were in their late teens. Serena was still establishing herself as a professional, while Venus was experiencing some early success. But being young didn’t stop them from being confident about their talent. At the Australian Open that year, the
sisters both said that they could beat any male tennis player ranked outside of the top 200.
It’s likely that Trump was responding to that very bold claim by the Williams sisters. Both Venus and Serena did participate in a Battle of the Sexes match at the Australian Open that year, facing German tennis player Karsten Braasch. Even though Braasch was famous for barely training (and doing more smoking and drinking instead), they both lost.
A match between 1998 John McEnroe and the teenage Williams sisters would have probably been a bloodbath.
McEnroe wasn’t sure why Trump picked him as the guy who could beat one of the Williams sisters, but he turned it down. He said that he never had a desire to play a woman and recreate a Battle of the Sexes match.
He was confident he could have done it at the time, but his kids have a slightly different opinion.
“Over the course of time, literally my kids, my daughters will say: ‘Dad I don’t know if you can beat Serena.’ I’m like, ‘God I can’t even get my kids on my side.'”
Twenty years ago, they were most likely wrong. But if they said that about their 59-year-old father last week? Well, they’re probably more right than wrong.
Source: YS H/N: USA Today.

Serena Williams early this at the 2018 Indian Wells tournament.

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