Gigi Fernandez is leading an empire…
The 53-year-old Puerto Rican former professional tennis player, a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, has been hired as coach of the New York Empire of World TeamTennis.
Fernandez, who succeeds Patrick McEnroe, is the only female coach in the six-team league, whose season runs from July 16 to Aug. 2.
Fernandez won 17 Grand Slam doubles titles from 1983 to 1997. The Puerto Rican star won two Olympic gold medals in doubles for the U.S.
The Empire will play at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center this summer. They were at the West Side Tennis Club in their debut season.
The Empire pick first in the roster draft March 14.
John Isner, Eugenie Bouchard and Mardy Fish were acquired in the marquee draft last month.
WTT, co-founded by King, enters its 42nd season.
Fernandez is the first female athlete from Puerto Rico to turn professional, the first Puerto Rican athlete to win a gold Medal, and the first to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.