Novak Djokovic lifts lid on ‘very simple’ split with long-term coach


Novak Djokovic has claimed that the manner of his split with long-term coach Goran Ivanisevic was “very simple” as he gears up for his first clay court event of the season.

Djokovic sent shockwaves through the tennis world after announcing his split with Ivanisevic towards the end of March, bringing one of the greatest player-coach relationships in tennis history to an end.

Under the tutelage of Ivanisevic, the 36-year-old became the first player in history to achieve 400 weeks at the top of the ATP Rankings, and doubled his Grand Slam tally from 12 to an historic 24.

Djokovic’s rampage through the tennis record books has largely come during his time with Ivanisevic, a former world No 2 during his own playing career, though recent results have not been as strong.

After winning three of the four majors in 2023, Djokovic’s stranglehold at the Australian Open was snapped by Jannik Sinner, before a stunning loss to Luca Nardi at Indian Wells.

It was after that loss that Djokovic and Ivanisevic split, with the Croatian having previously opened up about the end of his time coaching the world No 1.

Ivanisevic revealed that he felt that their partnership was coming to an end as early as last summer, and revealed he was not surprised that the relationship ultimately ran its course.

And, speaking ahead of action in Monte Carlo this week, Djokovic revealed he believed it was simply time for the pair to “move on.”

“We just both felt that we gave each other in this relationship the maximum and it was time to move on. It is very simple,” Djokovic said.

“He remains one of the most successful coaches in the history of the game, what we have done is something that can’t be deleted.

“The results and history speak for itself and he remains a good friend of me and my family.”

It remains to be seen to who Djokovic brings in as a permanent replacement, though he has been spotted with Nenad Zimonjic in Monte Carlo.

Zimonjic is someone that the Serbian knows well through the Davis Cup and United Cup, and could prove a vital figure in a potentially challenging few months ahead.

As one of the top eight seeds at the Masters 1000 event in Monte Carlo this week, Djokovic has received a round one bye and will take on Roman Safiullin or a qualifier in his opening match later this week.

He could be set for a quarter-final against defending champion Andrey Rublev, before potential meetings against Carlos Alcaraz and Jannik Sinner.


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