Sarasota News Leader

05/30/2014

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course at the cash register must have been arranged by the tennis gods. "Nick Bollettieri?" I asked. "Yes!" "I have some first edition tennis books that need a good home. Do you have a library at the academy?" "Tell you what! I'll take them with me to the International Tennis Hall of Fame, where I am to be inducted on July 12," he replied. "Congratulations, Nick!" I said. "What an honor!" Then Bollettieri sprang into action. " I'll auto- graph my new book, Changing the Game. Do you have $20 on you?" "I do," I said. (I must be careful with that phrase, I reminded myself. He has been mar- ried eight times.) "The books are in my car." Out we went. He opened one book and rifled through the table of contents. Listed were some of his prodi- gies, who had reached world No. 1 status: Andre Agassi, Maria Sharapova, Jim Courier and Monica Seles. I had followed their careers during my own lifelong addiction to the game. He autographed my book, adding a per- sonal note. We shook hands. "Grazie mille!" I said. "Prego! Ciao!" he waved wildly as he drove away. An artist's rendering shows a new facility under way at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, RI. Designed by McKim Mead and White in 1880, the original building, The Casino, is a club for tennis enthusiasts worldwide. It covers 6 acres, and features 13 grass courts and a museum with features honoring the greats of the game. Since 1987, the original structure has been a National Historic Landmark. Image from the website Sarasota News Leader May 30, 2014 Page 87

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