IBBOU Ines, a young Algerian tennis player who has hit back at Dominic Thiem saying he did not want to give money to the lowly ranked players, attracted the support of Venus Williams and the government of his country.
“Dear Dominic,” IBBOU, which is 620th in singles WTA ranking, said in an emotional nine minutes video posted on social media, “which would have been my career if I was in your shoes ? “
in April, Thiem, an Austrian ranked third in the men’s game, said he was not happy with a plan supported by Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic andRafael Nadal for top players to help the bottom of the league who lost their income from the tournament because of the coronavirus stoptennis.
“None of them will starve,” said an Austrian newspaper APAR Thiem, explaining that “many, many” of these players had not been at the top because “they put not the sport above all else. “
In its response, the IBBOU aged 21 said life was difficult for an African tennis player. “You know that in a country like mine, it’s not easy for a woman to be a top athlete. “
She said Thiem grew up in a” magical world “and while her parents were tennis coaches” I grew up in a very modest family with parents who have nothing to do with the tennis. “
” we do not choose where we are born, “she said, adding thatshe loved her parents and regretted that his endless journey in tournaments meant she saw so little.
she said that unlike Thiem, she could not afford a coach or his entourage and always had to inquiétonsbout of its budget and an Algerian, a visa.
“I am a single woman, traveling the world,” she said. “Always looking for the cheapest tickets”
She listed all the obstacles she faced as a young player in Algeria: poor facilities, not international coaches, no professional tournaments no indication on how to plan a career and “not a penny” of state aid.
“Sponsors, you say?” she said. “They even exist in Algeria. “
Last week, the WTA and ATP with the ITF and the four Grand Slams said they had set up a” player Relief Program “to help the most players hit hard by the coronavirus, adding that they had paid more than $ 6 million.
“help players is to help the game to survive,” said IBBOU, direct-Thiem. “We ask nothing of you except a little respect. “
Although the letter has not fired a Thiem response, he brought a reaction from other players.
“You’re my hero,” Venus Williams reacted as post IBBOU Instagram. Nick kyrgios, already criticized Thiem, added “respect” and emoticons and promised his ssupport when IBBOU thanked him.