King has been a major campaigner for the growth of women's sport (PA Images)
13 February 2020

Tennis legend Billie Jean King says allowing coaches to give instructions to players is 'no-brainer'

Tennis legend Billie Jean King has said allowing coaches to give instructions to their players on the court is a 'no-brainer'.

The Women's Tennis Association is going to trial the system at the Dubai Duty Free Championship this month where coaches will be able to signal to their players.

And King believes this will not only be beneficial for players, but that it will also attract media attention.

She said: "I have always been for it [coaching on the court]. Look at baseball. They have a first-base coach and a third-base coach, the coaches are giving all these signals, squeezing their nose or whatever and making all these signals. It's fascinating for people. 

"They make documentaries on these coaches. It's just a story to promote our sport and anything we can do to promote it is a good thing, it's a no-brainer."

Currently, WTA players are only allowed to summon their coaches once per set and in Grand Slams they are not allowed to talk to converse at all.

Players can receive code violations if they are coached during a match outside of these regulations.

King added: "We want more people to go into coaching, and you have to see it to be it. If they are sitting up in the stands no one knows who they are.

"Let's just look at the sports in the United States. They talk about the coaches in college and pro sports as much as they talk about the players. We don't do that for our sport and we are losing out on column inches, and time and media."

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