World No. 2 Novak Djokovic shared significant news towards parting ways with his entire coaching staff ahead of the Madrid Open, which starts on Sunday in Spain. The Serb is also the defending champion at the French Open in Paris. The press release from the 12-time Major winner can be seen below.
Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic mutually agreed with his coach Marian Vajda, fitness coach Gebhard Phil Gritsch, and physiotherapist Miljan Amanovic to end their successful and long term partnership after Masters tournament in Monte Carlo.
Novak and the team members decided to part ways after a detailed analysis of the game, achieved results in the previous period, and also after discussing private plans of each team member. Despite the fantastic cooperation so far, Djokovic felt he needed to make a change, and to introduce new energy in order to raise his level of play.
“I am forever grateful to Marian, GG and Miljan for decade of friendship, professionalism and commitment to my career goals. Without their support I couldn’t have achieved these professional heights. I know they completely dedicated themselves and their lives to help me achieve my dreams and they were always my driving force and wind in my back. It was not an easy decision, but we all felt that we need a change. I am very grateful and proud of our relationship and unbreakable bond that we built through years of mutual love, respect and understanding. They are my family and that will never change”, said Djokovic.
Novak’s longtime coach Marian Vajda thanked Djokovic on behalf of the whole team for the years they spent together and for the wonderful cooperation.
“Time spent with Novak feels like a whole lifetime. We were part of many of his incredible achievements, we were living and breathing for his dreams. I gave everything I could as a coach and I am very proud of our results. We arrived to the point where we all realized we need new energy in the team. Novak can do so much more and I am sure he will. I am convinced that he will remain at the top of the tennis for many years and that he will bring a lot of joy to all the tennis fans around the world with his victories. Of course, we will continue consulting each other, seeing each other and hanging out together because after all, we are a family”, explained Vajda.
Novak has added that he believes this “shock therapy” will help him achieve better results.
“I want to continue raising the level of my game and stamina and this is a continuous process. I enjoy this journey, it feels like I am starting something new again and I love this challenge. I am a hunter and my biggest goal is to find the winning spark on the court again”, said Novak.
Novak’s fitness coach Gebhard Gritsch shared his appreciation for the opportunity to work with such an athlete.
“It was a great privilege to have worked with Novak for exactly eight years to the day. It is the dream of every coach to be able to work with an athlete as gifted, professional and committed as Novak. We kept pushing the limits and found new ways to improve. I have no doubt that he will be back on top of the game again. He is a champion and a warrior and the sky is the limit for him. I am very proud of all the time we spent together as a team and a family on the road. It was time for us all to move on professionally, but privately we will remain friends and family and continue sharing all the joys of life with each other”, said Gritsch.
Miljan Amanovic, Novak’s physio commented the situation in a positive tone.
“Novak is my best friend and my brother. I spent more time with him than with my family in the past 10 years. Nothing will change between us as our lives are interconnected in so many ways. I will forever be here for him and I look forward to seeing him rise to his full potential again. I have no doubt that he will”, said Amanovic.
Novak mentioned that he is thinking of strengthening the team with a new head coach, but he does not want to rush things.
“I feel like this is a new chapter in my life. My career was always on the upward path and this time I’m experiencing how it is when the path takes you in a different direction. I want to find a way to come back to the top stronger and more resilient. I have so much faith in this process and that’s why I will take time to find the right person who I can connect with professionally. I have been on the tour long enough to know how to manage daily routines and I don’t want to rush my decision. I will be on the tour alone for a while with support of my family and management. I will inform the public when I find the right person, but for now I thank you for your support and understanding”, concluded Djokovic.