Published On: Thu, Mar 28th, 2024
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Novak Djokovic shows true colours by taking completely different approach to Tiger Woods | Tennis | Sport

Djokovic and Ivanisevic ended their wildly successful coaching partnership a few days ago, with the 24-time Grand Slam champion sharing the news on Instagram. A former world No. 1 himself, Ivanisevic was invited into the camp in 2018 and first appeared in his box during Wimbledon 2019 – a tournament Djokovic won.

The Serb won 12 of his 24 career Major titles with Ivanisevic in his corner. But the pair recently agreed to split following a tough start to the season for Djokovic. “Goran and I decided to stop working together a few days ago,” the 36-year-old wrote on Wednesday. While Djokovic and Ivanisevic were known for having the odd mid-match spat, they have maintained a strong friendship – something the world No. 1 mentioned in his announcement.

He added: “Our on court chemistry had its ups and downs, but our friendship was always rock solid. In fact, I am proud to say (not sure he is) that apart from winning tournaments together, we also had a side battle in Parchisi going on… for many years. And – that tournament never stops for us.”

Djokovic has always remained classy when axing his coaches and keeps strong bonds with all of his old mentors. The 98-time title winner has a good relationship with Boris Becker – the man who coached him from late 2013 to late 2016. Djokovic is also close with Marian Vajda, his longest-serving coach who left the camp in 2022.

The 36-year-old also had a brief stint with former players Andre Agassi and Radek Stepanek in his box. And Djokovic is still friends with both men to this day, despite their short-lived professional relationship. But not every athlete is the same when it comes to their relationships, as golfing legend Tiger Woods was branded a “zombie” when he cut ties with his long-time agent.

Super-agent Hughes Norton met Woods when he was just 13 and they soon started working together. Their first taste of immense success came in 1997 when Woods won the Masters aged 21. Norton then spent years arranging multi-million-pound deals for his client – including Woods’ iconic partnership with Nike.

But the 15-time major golf champion suddenly cut ties with his first agent in 1998. And Norton recently opened up on what he branded a “betrayal with a capital B”. Speaking to the Daily Mail, Norton said it was a common theme with Woods and his coaching staff.

“The solace I can take, which doesn’t provide much, is this: He was an equal opportunity zombie with relationships, his swing coaches, his lawyer, the guy negotiated the IMG representation deal, with caddies. When it’s over, it’s over. It is the way he terminates relationships with everyone. Whether it’s girlfriends, whether it’s his former golf coaches. It’s ironic, really,” he said.

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