Two of Puerto Rico's finest WTA players continue their efforts to help their homeland heal from the devastating effects of Hurricane Maria.
WTA Staff
September 22, 2017

In just about 24 hours after announcing a campaign to raise funds to assist in Puerto Rico's recovery from Hurrican Maria, Puerto Rican No.1 and gold medalist Monica Puig smashed her initial $25,000 fundraising goal and upped the current goal to $50,000 after an overwhelming response.

"Puerto Rico is my home and to see what's going on there truly breaks my heart," a tearful Puig told CNN via satelite from Wuhan on Friday. "Tennis is so small and life is so precious. It doesn't matter what I'm doing here out on the court.

"It's important to me because it's my career. there's a big picture and there's so many people going through so much more than just winning or losing a tennis match."

Read more: Monica Puig starts fundraiser for Hurricane Maria recovery

Puig's campaign has been shared across the tennis community and the world online, with her WTA peers including Maria Sharapova, ATP star Kei Nishikori, along with Tennis Channel and IMG helping the cause.

"I can say that 100% of my heart is with Puerto Rico and I really wish that they come back bigger and stronger from this. My initial goal was $25,000...and [it] made me extremely emotional to see that so many people care and so many people have reached out."

In addition, WTA legend Gigi Fernandez, owner of 17 Grand Slam doubles titles and member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, has also pledged to help in the recovery effort.

Fernandez has pledged a $50,000 crowd-funded goal as well, also from the website YouCaring.

"I really want to thank [the tennis community] for all the support that they have given me and Puerto Rico. With them, their credibility and their huge voices...to reach people worldwide and let them know we need their help.
Monica Puig

The situation in Puerto Rico has gone from utterly devastating to a humanitarian crisis in recent days, with the storm currently being blamed for 15 deaths on the island, and 37 overall.

The power grid was completely destroyed in the wake of the storm, leaving all 3.4 million residents without electricity.

Puerto Rican governor Ricardo Rossello has told international news outlets that it could take months to restore power in some locations, with San Juan mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz estimating that some areas could be without power for four to six months, and calling the deverstation unlike anything she'd ever seen before.


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