LONDON, 30 June 2019 – Croatian tennis legend Goran Ivanišević has joined the coaching team of world no.1 Novak Djoković just one day out from the start of Wimbledon.
Ivanišević (47) confirmed the rumours about the partnership after photos of the pair training together at the All England Club surfaced on Sunday. Talking to SportKlub.hr, the former Wimbledon champion said he was surprised when he got the call.
“It was a strange, unexpected call, it surprised me a little. I was just traveling to Sweden. I finished there yesterday, and today came to my first training session. I’m just going to be here for one week, because I have obligations which I’m trying to move, but again, that’s all,” he told Sport Klub, before adding.
“This is a huge recognition for me as a coach because Novak doesn’t choose coaches just like that, he needs to see that someone can help him. I am delighted that they’ve chosen me and I am happy that Marian (Vajda) is on board with it. First practice went really well and I hope that our collaboration will last.”
“This is sort of “getting to know“ each other, although we know each other really well. We talked about my perception of his game, some tehnical details. We’ll work closely here and then we’ll sit down and see what happens next.”
Goran and Novak were teammates during the International Premier League in 2014 and when asked a few years ago if he would like to coach the current world no.1, he said: “It would be as if Real Madrid asked you to be the manager. It’s the dream of all coaches and analysts of the game.”
Djoković’s coaching team is led by Slovak Marian Vajda. Vajda coached Djokoivć from 2006 until 2017, then took over again in 2018.
Ivanišević has previous coaching experience with Marin Čilić, who he helped coach to win the US Open in 2014, Thomas Berdych and Miloš Raonić. Ivanišević’s friend and former Croatian Davis Cup teammate, Ivan Ljubičić is currently coaching Roger Federer.