Wednesday, May 18, 2011

"...his intention is that I...continue to be strong and fight"

Virginie Razzano's fiance, 32-year-old Stephane Vidal, died Monday. Vidal, who was Razzano's coach until March, died from complications of a brain tumor which was diagnosed nine years ago. Vidal had learned to walk and write again after undergoing surgery when the tumor was discovered. He took a turn for the worse early this spring, and he almost died in March. Vidal's family kept the news from Razzano, however, while she was competing in the United States.

"Four or five days ago, I asked him: 'Do you want me to go and play at Roland Garros?'" Razzano told L'Equipe. "He answered: 'Yes, you need to play.' Because his intention is that I keep on going in my life, that I play for him and that I continue to be strong and to fight."

Razzano said that Vidal helped her to overcome a "very difficult adolescence."

Razzano, who is ranked number 93 in the world, was ranked as high as 16 in 2009. She was off of the tour for several months because of an injury she said was caused by a WTA trainer. The Frenchwoman, inspired by Vidal's final request, will play in the 2011 French Open.

Women Who Serve joins the tennis community in offering condolences to Razzano.

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