Some 10,318 athletes representing 197 nations in 26 sports including tennis were competing at the $1.6 billion Centennial Olympic Games held in Atlanta, Georgia in 1996. About 3.5 billion TV viewers, "more than half the world's population", were said to be watching the 16 days of competition. It was, as Juan Antonio Samaranch stated, "The Games of unity have indeed been most exceptional games. Well done, Atlanta." 

Around 11,000 tennis fans got their money's worth watching Andre Agassi took 77 minutes to win the Olympic gold medal on stadium court at Stone Mountain Park. Sergi Bruguera of Spain won silver. 'The New York Times' reported, "The last American man to win Olympic gold in singles was Vincent Richards in 1924, the year tennis began a 64-year hiatus from the Games." 

'The Washington Post' added, "Tennis in the Olympics dates back to the first modern Olympics in 1896 in Athens, Greece. Tennis was a fixture on the program through the 1924 Games in Paris. The International Tennis Federation - the international governing body for tennis - and the International Olympic Committee saw differences on the definition of amateurism, which led to the exclusion of tennis from the Olympic Games as an official medal sport until 1988 in Seoul, South Korea." 

Andre Agassi told the press, "To win a Grand Slam in the sport of tennis is the greatest accomplishment inside the sport. To win an Olympic gold medal is the greatest thing you can accomplish in any sport. There are a lot of reasons on their own why the Olympics are so special but to be a second generation competitor is really special." 

Tony Nimmons who had worked as an umpire at the US Open told Nicholas Walz in 2011, "Tennis, to me, challenged my notion of sports. It’s a thinking sport above all – and to improve as an official or player strengthens the mind but also the body. Right now, we’re trying to recruit officials but there’s no formula for finding them. In my case, I enjoyed playing so much and saw another avenue in which to challenge myself. I love that no two matches are the same, and that there’s the opportunity to learn something new if you open yourself up to the possibility." 

In January 2017, Andre Agassi arrived at the Grand Hyatt hotel in south Mumbai to attend the unveiling of the rebranding of private equity firm India Value Fund Advisors Pvt. Ltd to True North. In a conversation with Harsha Bhogle, Andre Agassi paid tribute to Roger Federer, "I cannot believe how easy he (Roger Federer) makes it look. It almost pisses me off that he just makes it look so easy.

"It's a great generation of tennis. One that takes decades and makes it into one generation that everybody should be grateful to be able to watch. You’re looking at arguably the greatest ever because of what he could do on every surface. He could beat the best from the back of the court. He had Plan A, B, C, D. And he never usually got to Plan C or D. Occasionally he’d go to Plan B. So this is just somebody incredibly special.

"But he’s also dealing with two other guys that you can argue are at the top of the history of our sport, with (Novak) Djokovic and (Rafael) Nadal. The game's changed so much. When people ask old champions whether they would match up (to modern times), you don’t. When you look at the change, for example, the way the ball spins now, it changes the rules of engagement, changes how you approach the game."

Andre Agassi also told audience, "My father was a visionary, if you want to be kind to him. When I was six-months old, in his head, I was already playing tennis. He would put a balloon over my head and tie a ping-pong racket on my hand. As I tried desperately to remove the racket, he visualized me playing and said I would become a great player. I have a video of playing as a four-year-old. Our family didn’t have much and my father would bet on me in Vegas. But looking back, I am grateful for my father’s sacrifices."

However at one time, "I hated what I did (tennis). I saw what it did to our family dynamics. Dad had rules: Wake up, play and then brush teeth, in that order. As a child, I was moved 3,000 miles away into a tennis academy, living and playing with other kids. We raised each other, kind of like Lord of the Flies with forehands and backhands. Fear is a great motivator and making it (a success) was my only escape. I took rebellion to the world stage.

"The angst and the conflict started early. There were so many feelings tied to survival and not having a choice. I thought winning and reaching No. 1 would bring peace. I turned No. 1 (in 1995) and it changed nothing. When I turned No. 1, it started a downward spiral - I got into a marriage I didn’t want (with actress Brooke Shields), doing drugs… It took 25 years to reach No. 1 and less than two years to get (down) to No. 141.

"I lost in Germany in the first round and my coach locked me up in the room. The decision was either we quit or we start over. I never hated tennis as much as that moment. Looking out of the window, I wondered how many people chose their life, and I had an epiphany - nobody does. It gave me an opportunity to change my life. I saw a program on (TV) '60 Minutes', on kids having no choice in their life and there was a connection. I wanted to build my own school and overnight committed to a $40 million mortgage.

"This was my connection back to playing a sport I didn’t love. People talk about love-hate; mine was hate-love. Tennis gave me a life, my wife and I was grateful to play longer than my body allowed. An athlete spends one-third of his life not preparing for two-thirds of his life. Failure and success are an illusion. Failure is an interpretation of an event. You have that in sport. What matters is how you engage with life. It’s full of beautiful moments and difficult times but these are all train stops. You get off and on but stay on the right train. Dad chose for me the highest bar that I could reach. A lot of good comes from asking for the best from yourself."

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