Women's Sport: Famous athletes and their mums who coached them

It goes without saying that mums can have a huge impact on what their children do as a career, whether that’s following in their footsteps or moral support and encouragement. For some athletes, this influence is even more practical as they are both mum and coach.

To celebrate this Mother’s Day, we’ve taken a look at three mums who have coached their children and helped them forge impressive sporting careers.

Liz and Eilish McColgan

The saying like mother, like daughter, is very apt when it comes to Liz McColgan-Nuttall and Eilish McColgan. Liz was a middle and long-distance runner and a former world champion and Olympic silver medallist in the 10,000 metres.

Now Eilish is running in her footsteps, with her mum at her side every step of the way as her coach. Her main disciplines are the 5000-metre race and 3000-metre steeplechase and she is a two-time Olympian. In late October last year, Eilish broke one of Liz’s long-standing records – the Scottish 10-mile record.

Serena and Venus Williams and Oracene Price

The careers of Serena and Venus Williams are thoroughly a family affair – both their parents were tennis coaches and helped kickstart their grand slam-winning daughters’ careers.

Oracene Price taught herself tennis to help with her daughters’ training and has spoken of the importance of mental preparation. In an interview with Today, she said: “[During a match], I’m watching their techniques, mostly.”

“But before the game, I’m watching them mentally. And I see a lot of people go out there, not mentally there, but it is so important, cause you have to believe that you can do something before you do it.”

Their parenting and coaching techniques clearly worked as Serena has 23 Grand Slams to her name and Venus seven.

Judy Murray, Andy Murray and Jamie Murray

As a teenager and young adult, Judy Murray amassed 64 Scottish tennis titles to her name. After initially trying to make it as a pro, she eventually went to university instead. She started coaching her sons and worked with both Andy and Jamie Murray until they were teenagers.

She has also coached many players for the Lawn Tennis Association and captained the British Fed Cup team from 2011 until 2016.

Both Andy and Jamie have a number of titles to their names – Jamie is a seven-time Grand Slam doubles champion and Andy is a three-time Grand Slam winner and two-time Olympic champion. 

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