Andre Agassi had a rather rocky personal life during his prime. The player wrestled with meth addiction and went through a messy divorce from his first wife, Brooke Shields. However, he was able to pull his life together and would go on to win big tournaments. He would also marry Steffi Graf, which became a long-lasting marriage. But it was not an easy task as Agassi was quite nervous as he tried to woo the German player. The first time Agassi made progress with Graf was after their first training session. Although he was ready to give up, his coach at the time told him to try one more time.
Andre Agassi on his nerves during a training session with Steffi Graf
After several attempts to ask Graf on a date, Agassi was ready to give up. The American player was smitten with Graf, while the German player was only courteous with the American player. But his coach at the time, Brad Gilbert, told him to try one more time. In his autobiography, ‘Open’, Agassi recalled how a training session between the two proceeded. When the fated day arrived, the eight-time grand slam champion rushed to the court.
He further explained, “I tie my shoes quickly. I pull a racket out of the bag and walk onto the court – then impulsively whip off my shirt. It’s shameless, I realize, but I’m desperate. Steffi looks and does a barely detectable double take. Thank you, Gil.”Elated at a possible excited reaction, Agassi decided to carry on the momentum. However, his nerves got the better of him as he kept hitting the ball at the net. “We start to hit. She’s flawless, of course, and I’m struggling to get the ball over the net. The net is your biggest enemy. Relax, I tell myself. Stop thinking, Come on, Andre, it’s only a practice session.”
“But I can’t help myself. I’ve never seen a woman so beautiful. Standing still, she’s a goddess; in motion, she’s poetry. I’m suitor, but also a fan. I’ve wondered for so long what Steffi Graf’s forehand feels like. I’ve watched her on TV and at tournaments and I’ve wondered how that ball feels when it come flying off her racket.”His efforts were wasted as he was unable to get a grasp on his mind. Even after he had watched her matches on TV or live, he was also entranced by how Graf hit the ball with every return. With each return, he imagined how the ball felt flying off of her racket.
The American player was enchanted by the person he would eventually marry. As the practice session continued and the two hit rallies, he started understanding the nuances of Steffi Graf. For him, it was as if he was touching regardless of the distance between them, “Every forehand is foreplay“.This event came from a training session that was organized due to Brad Gilbert, his coach’s help.
How Agassi’s coach helped him with Steffi Graf
Andre Agassi was the smitten kitten by all means of the term. All of his attempts to woo Graf had blown up in his face and he was ready to stop his pursuit. However, his coach at the time, Brad Gilbert, told him to try once again and set up a training session with Graf. Although he could not come off as the synonym for confidence, Agassi managed to strike up a conversation that led to a romantic relationship between the two. After that, Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf became one of the greatest love stories in tennis. The two changed each other’s lives and have been strong in their bond, along with their two children.