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Winningest UW tennis coach in school history to retire after nearly three decades

Matt Anger has coached six All-Americans since his tenure at UW began in 1995.

SEATTLE — University of Washington (UW) men's tennis coach Matt Anger, the school's second longest-tenured coach, announced he'll be retiring after this season.

Here is a look at Anger's legacy and how he's wrapping up his career coaching one of the best players in UW history.

In 1986 Matt Anger was ranked No. 23 in the world. A year later he won a doubles title at the French Open.

In 1995 he took over as the head coach of the men's tennis team at UW. 

"Obviously, I love tennis, but I grew up loving every sport," Anger said. "I like sports in general and I kind of gravitated towards this. My dad had played some college tennis was a high school coach and so I played a fair amount. I think I was better at tennis than other sports and that's probably why I really got into it. But for me, it's always been just the challenge of the next level, the next level, the next level."

And Anger helped the Huskies reach that next level.

He's the winningest coach in school history and led the Huskies to 19 straight postseason tournaments.

In 2005 his Huskies won their first Pac-10 title and Anger was the conference coach of the year. 

"I've spent my whole life in tennis and everything I've done has been in the sport," Anger said. "And so it's kind of, you know, when I eat sleep and drink tennis, that's what I'm thinking about. And so, it did maybe the flop. I don't think it's a stated philosophy, but it's just my way of life," said Anger.

Anger has 428 career wins. He's coached six All-Americans and there's a good chance Clement Chidekh from this year's team will also be named an All-American.

"He's just always there for us, always helping, and he's so structured," Chidekh said. "Every time we are in trouble or something, he gives us like three, four steps to do and if you do it, you're no longer in trouble. So, he just gives us so much confidence."

"Part of the deal in coaching is that you've got to motivate players, train them, develop them and a lot of times as a coach, we're dragging people," Anger said. "I mean, the great thing about Clement is that he is as eager as I am to get to work and so, you know there may be days I'm pulling him along, but there are days he's pulling me along and that's what makes it enjoyable."

Chidekh is currently ranked eighth in the country but was ranked as high as No. 1, becoming the first Husky to ever be ranked that high.

"When I first came here, that was my dream to be where I am," Chidekh said. "It just took a lot of hard work with the coach." 

Chidekh will be the final Husky Anger coaches at the UW at the NCAA individual championships starting May 23.

"You've got to love the competition and you've got to love battling out there, whatever your style of play is," Anger said. "He wants to compete and that's the best."

And while Anger is retiring from the UW after 28 years, he now plans to become Chidekh's personal coach as he moves on to a professional career.

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