Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg? - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

I randomly saw this at my local library - I'd never even heard of it before! Dave Rineberg was their hitting partner/coach for seven years from the early nineties; did it get much publicity/acclaim when it was released? I'm about 3/4 of the way through now. For those who've read it, what did you think of it? I'm finding it a rather interesting read so far.

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post #2 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 03:19 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

Would you mind sharing some of the interesting things you found?

Anything intringuing or unexpected?

__________________________________
Venus Williams Grand Slam VII
Serena Williams Grand Slam XXI

Nadia Petrova Grand Slam Hope Is Fading
Updated: Jan 31. 2015
Next Update Date: Post 2015 RG
Rest in peace, Elena Baltacha.

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post #3 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

Sorry if this isn't news at all, but I didn't know lots of stuff in this book. Just a few things which interested me:

Rineberg received death threats upon coaching the WS - when the news was made public, he received several phonecalls and letters warning him to keep away etc. Apparently Venus, Serena and the rest of the family all received numerous death threats at the start of their careers.

Richard wanted Venus to be a total serve-volleyer at the start. Whenever she was in trouble, he told her to just go to the net and win the point any way possible from there.

After their first meeting, Hingis picked up loads of beads which had fallen from Venus' head during the match - at the press conference Martina was asked what she thought of Venus and her claim she was going to be number one in the world, and Martina gave out the beads to the reporters, laughed, and said she thought it was ridiculous. (I guess at the time it did seem far-fetched)

Venus seemed to be the far more emotional one of them when they were much younger; she seems to be much quicker with her mouth, a bit more "cheeky" than Serena, and on-court, had the reputation to those who knew her as being more demonstrative with her feelings than Serena.

There's other things, but the general feeling I get is that Richard Williams does not come out of this book well AT ALL; it really sheds a bad light on him. To be honest, the guy sounds like a mad nightmare. However, Rineberg clearly has alot of time for Venus, Serena and Oracene, whom he is clearly very fond of.

It's not exactly a brilliantly written book, but pretty cool to read for a WTA fan.

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post #4 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 03:41 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

I read it. It seems like Richard took control of the sisters anytime anywhere.
Its really amazing that such a family have never had problem like Lucic family or Pierce family.
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post #5 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 03:49 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

Quote:

Rineberg received death threats upon coaching the WS - when the news was made public, he received several phonecalls and letters warning him to keep away etc. Apparently Venus, Serena and the rest of the family all received numerous death threats at the start of their careers.
Was there any hints on the origin of the the death threats?

Any similarities between anyof the known African-American rising to threathen the white establishment?

Example: Hank Aaron, Tiger Woods, Mohamed Ali, Jack John Johnson, Jackie Robinson, Joe Louis, etc...

__________________________________
Venus Williams Grand Slam VII
Serena Williams Grand Slam XXI

Nadia Petrova Grand Slam Hope Is Fading
Updated: Jan 31. 2015
Next Update Date: Post 2015 RG
Rest in peace, Elena Baltacha.

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post #6 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 03:53 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

At the time, Hingis was on top of the world and found the idea of anyone challenging her laughable.
If necessary, she will deride them the competition.

The things is, she got away with it in the press most of the time, because she could back it up on the court.
That is, until the WS came on the scene. And Serena took her on squarelly, verbally and on the court.
Quote:
After their first meeting, Hingis picked up loads of beads which had fallen from Venus' head during the match - at the press conference Martina was asked what she thought of Venus and her claim she was going to be number one in the world, and Martina gave out the beads to the reporters, laughed, and said she thought it was ridiculous. (I guess at the time it did seem far-fetched)

__________________________________
Venus Williams Grand Slam VII
Serena Williams Grand Slam XXI

Nadia Petrova Grand Slam Hope Is Fading
Updated: Jan 31. 2015
Next Update Date: Post 2015 RG
Rest in peace, Elena Baltacha.
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post #7 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:06 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

An example of Richard's behaviour plz?

Is there any creature on earth as unfortunate as an ugly woman?
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post #8 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:09 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tennisbum79 View Post
Was there any hints on the origin of the the death threats?.
Not really; they were usually made to his phone, by a voice he didn't recognize, but obviously someone who'd managed to get hold of his cell phone number - not hard though, considering he was a well-known coach attached to a few clubs. Not much to go on really.

Just nearing the end now; the way they parted is really sad and a bit IMO. Richard asks him to be available for the USO 99 as a hitting coach, but then just cuts off all contact; doesn't formally tell him the partnership is over, just ignores him; when Rineberg is at the USO, he goes to cognratulate Venus on winning one of her early rounds (remember this is someone she's known very closely for seven years and is considered a friend, not just a coach, by all accounts) and she barely acknowledges him; only to then, as she's leaving, turn round and smile, and, in Rineberg's words, imply she just can't speak to him right now and that she's sorry; clearly she'd been warned about speaking to Rineberg by Richard, and found the whole situation very painful (earlier, in 96 I think, Richard scolded Venus for saying Rineberg was her coach, and that she was to only say he or Oracene coached her) And that's it; a few days later, he gets a phonecall saying he needs to "stay away from Venus and Serena, or leave in a bodybag."

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post #9 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:36 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Libertango View Post
Not really; they were usually made to his phone, by a voice he didn't recognize, but obviously someone who'd managed to get hold of his cell phone number - not hard though, considering he was a well-known coach attached to a few clubs. Not much to go on really.

Just nearing the end now; the way they parted is really sad and a bit IMO. Richard asks him to be available for the USO 99 as a hitting coach, but then just cuts off all contact; doesn't formally tell him the partnership is over, just ignores him; when Rineberg is at the USO, he goes to cognratulate Venus on winning one of her early rounds (remember this is someone she's known very closely for seven years and is considered a friend, not just a coach, by all accounts) and she barely acknowledges him; only to then, as she's leaving, turn round and smile, and, in Rineberg's words, imply she just can't speak to him right now and that she's sorry; clearly she'd been warned about speaking to Rineberg by Richard, and found the whole situation very painful (earlier, in 96 I think, Richard scolded Venus for saying Rineberg was her coach, and that she was to only say he or Oracene coached her) And that's it; a few days later, he gets a phonecall saying he needs to "stay away from Venus and Serena, or leave in a bodybag."
What did Rineberg expect after the way he ended the relationship?

Richard asking him to help out at USO '99 and his reponse to cut off the the raltionship, w/o having the proefessional courtesy to notify Richard.
This the USO, the most important for Venus and Serena in their young careers.

This book must be read in the context that one the antagonist wrote it.
So he is getting his point accross, maybe seeking attention. I have never heard of him.
I know Rick Macy was involved and seems to have had amicable professional relationship with Richard.

__________________________________
Venus Williams Grand Slam VII
Serena Williams Grand Slam XXI

Nadia Petrova Grand Slam Hope Is Fading
Updated: Jan 31. 2015
Next Update Date: Post 2015 RG
Rest in peace, Elena Baltacha.
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post #10 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

^Sorry, I think I must have written it wrong; it was Richard who abruptly cut off all contact without any kind of word or warning. Rineberg was constantly trying to get in touch without any luck; eventually of course, he got the message.

Still, you're right; I always read books objectively, remembering this is only one "interpretation" and that personal feelings can sometimes get in the way of the facts.

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post #11 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:42 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

There's something else Rineberg wrote about Richard that I found interesting, but I'll wait until Libertango finishes the book before I mention it here.

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post #12 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:47 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

This seems to be like a scene out of a drama movie.






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post #13 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:50 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Libertango View Post
^Sorry, I think I must have written it wrong; it was Richard who abruptly cut off all contact without any kind of word or warning. Rineberg was constantly trying to get in touch without any luck; eventually of course, he got the message..
OK.
Maybe someone needs to ask Richard what were the circumstances behind the abrupt termination of the working relationship.

Can you shed some light on this?
At the USO'99, did Richard ask Rineberg to be hitting coach or Rineberg asked Richard to stay on as hitting coach ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Libertango View Post
^Still, you're right; I always read books objectively, remembering this is only one "interpretation" and that personal feelings can sometimes get in the way of the facts.
When did the book come out?
I wish I could hear what Richard reaction is.

__________________________________
Venus Williams Grand Slam VII
Serena Williams Grand Slam XXI

Nadia Petrova Grand Slam Hope Is Fading
Updated: Jan 31. 2015
Next Update Date: Post 2015 RG
Rest in peace, Elena Baltacha.
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post #14 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 04:51 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

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Originally Posted by darrinbaker00 View Post
There's something else Rineberg wrote about Richard that I found interesting, but I'll wait until Libertango finishes the book before I mention it here.
Write "Spoiler Alert" above your post. Tell us, D.

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post #15 of 63 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2010, 05:01 PM
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Re: Anyone read "Venus & Serena" by Dave Rineberg?

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Write "Spoiler Alert" above your post. Tell us, D.
Rineberg wrote that while he was sure that Williams-Williams matches weren't fixed, he wouldn't have put it past Richard to do it.

"He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord." -- Proverbs 18:22

"Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard." -- Herb Brooks

"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life." -- Muhammad Ali
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