Alexandre Dalifard / Photo credit: LUDOVIC MARIN / AFP 14:00 pm, June 01, 2023PODCAST - In an unprecedented podcast recorded by Europe 1 in Cameroon, Yannick Noah confides in the microphone of Jacques Vendroux, 40 years after his mythical victory at Roland-Garros. The former tennis champion talks about his family roots and his beginnings in the world of tennis. It was in the village of Etoudi that it all began. This is where he lives today. Europe 1, official radio of Roland-Garros.
After experiencing success at a very young age on tennis courts and beyond, Yannick Noah has changed, he has matured a long reflection on the meaning of celebrity. And embarked on humanitarian work, especially alongside his mother. His life is now divided between France and Cameroon. "In Africa, you can live both: you can be poor and be proud of it. This contrast is interesting. It doesn't have to be poor in Africa. But there are referents like Yannick and other idols who make you dream and bring happiness and smiles," said Seka, the director of the "Village Noah" located in Etoudi, a district in the north of Yaoundé. It is in the streets of this city, in the middle of the ghettos, that the former French tennis champion took the Europe 1 team for the filming of the podcast "Yannick Noah, between you and me".
"You noticed, when we were in the car, that people greeted him because he represents something for the nation, for the people and for the African continent. And he, in exchange, he will do everything to help, boost, advise and bring his stone to the building of this new Africa, "says the director of the village at the microphone of Europe 1 speaking of Yannick Noah.
If the winner of Roland-Garros "can not make the big jump in a sea of problems", he still tries to help at his level. He does this by accompanying projects, developing an activity or simply with a smile. "Africans are proud of it and are very happy about it," concludes Seka.
>> READ ALSO - INEDIT - Pension, hazing... Yannick Noah talks about his difficult start in Nice
Chairman of the Board of Directors of FC Vent d'Etoudi
Already chief of the village of Etoudi, a district of Yaoundé, since 2012, Yannick Noah has since become the president of the board of directors of FC Vent d'Etoudi, a mythical club. "In recent times, they didn't have the opportunity to play because the stadium was not in good condition. I was offered to be honorary president and I accepted obviously, "says the singer. But the former tennis champion wants to go further and wants to do more than restore the court.
>> READ ALSO - "If I lost, she was sick": Yannick Noah returns to the decisive role of his mother
"The young people who are here, they know that the ground was not in good condition. There were holes, waste and people were passing by constantly," says Yannick Noah. To begin with, they will take care of the gutters and the main stand that will be covered." The idea is to make sure that the community has a stadium that they can be proud of. We will take care of the athlete, of course, but in a second time. This is the first time I have been president and I can say that it is not over. We have a lot of ambition in Etoudi, "warns Yannick Noah at the microphone of Jacques Vendroux. FC Vent d'Etoudi is therefore likely to have a second life thanks to its new president.
To listen in full to Yannick Noah's intimate and rare account of the strongest moments of his life, find the podcast "Yannick Noah, entre vous et moi" produced by Europe 1 Studio on your favorite listening platform.