Tennis legend Ilie Nastase has called on Andy Murray to think again about his need to replace Ivan Lendl with another big name coach and has suggested that he already has all of the tools that he needs to succeed.
Murray appointed eight time Grand Slam winner Lendl as his coach at the start of 2012 and, under his tutelage, he went on to enjoy the most successful period of his career to date. Having lost in three Grand Slam finals up to 2012, Murray turned to Lendl, who had lost in four finals himself before winning his first Grand Slam, to give him the mental steel needed to reach the next level. The pair parted company in March of this year with Murray having finally broken his duck at the 2012 US Open and secured his place as a British national treasure by winning Wimbledon in 2013.
It remains unclear exactly why Murray and Lendl parted ways although the amount of time that the Czech was able to devote to coaching is thought to be an issue. As far as Nastase is concerned, however, Murray has no need to worry about no longer having Lendl at his side. “I don't think these guys need a coach,” the 67 year old said. “They need a good friend maybe. Or a good-looking girl, I don't know. I don't think they [former stars] can help much. What can they do? He [Murray] knows how to play the game,” the two time Grand Slam winner added.
In recent times a number of other stars, as well as Murray, have turned to legends of the game to tune their performance. Novak Djokovic, for instance, has hired Boris Becker and Roger Federer has called on the services of Stefan Edberg to help him towards that elusive 18th Grand Slam. Nastase is highly sceptical of the motives of modern day professionals turning to well known names for support and he is convinced that all Murray and his fellow competitors need is someone to practice with and offer encouragement. “I think he (Murray) just needs someone to trust him and practice with him. Not necessarily a big guy or name, I don't believe in that,” the Romanian said. “Djokovic did well without Boris Becker. Maybe he's using him to boost his image, I don't know,” he added.
It is difficult to say exactly how Andy Murray benefited from having a grand Slam winner in his corner. Lendl did little to alter Murray's game but he did seem to change his mentality and convince him that he was good enough to win Grand Slams. Maybe Lendl's words would have held less weight and had less effect had he not been a former champion, who knows? It remains to be seen the effect that Lendl's departure has on Murray and whether the Scot does need a big name coach to keep up his momentum and pick up his third Grand Slam title in 2014. You can follow his progress this season and keep up with other sports betting news with bet365 at http://www.bet365.com/news/en/betting.