Tennis is a grand sport and hundreds of players play this fantastic sport but only a few makes it to the spot. However, it is not just the individual talent of those players that take them to the top spot.
Usually, a team accompanies every player but the most important person in that team is the coach, who takes the amateur prom the bottom of the hill to the peak. It would be hard to say who is the best coach in the history of tennis.
In this article, we will talk about some of the best coaches in the tennis history, who led their apprentices to great heights. Those players would never be forgotten, and the same goes for the coaches, who helped them grow.
#10. Richard Williams
Who hasn’t heard the name of the William sisters? Both Serena and Venus Williams are a well-known names in tennis, who have achievements in both single and double category.
Both sisters reached these great heights thanks to the early guidance in their life, and that is none other than their father. Richard Williams was the driving force behind his daughter and he was also their mentor. The American coach began training his daughters since they were only four years old.
Under his guidance, Serena and Venus Williams became World No.1 and even went on winning numerous Grand Slam titles and other major titles in tennis. There is no doubt Williams sisters wouldn’t have come so far without their father’s shadow.
#9. Boris Becker
The German coach was a phenomenal player during his youth, event voted as the Player of the Year in 1989. The retired World No. 1 was even the first player to appear in seven Wimbledon finals. Apart from his countless achievements as a player, he also made a name for himself as a successful coach.
After retiring from player career, Becker tried his hand in coaching and took the Serbian pro Novak Djokovic under his wing for three years. The German coach became the Djokovic’s guide to win six of his 19 Grand Slam.
Becker won six Grand Slam singles titles, including three Wimbledons, two Australian Opens and a US Open but couldn’t get his hand on French Open. However, as a coach he finally got the Roland Garros, which his apprentice Nole won in 2014.
#8. Patrick Mouratoglou
We have already heard about the force behind Serena Williams’ success and that being her father, Richard Williams. However, there has been another man who led the American star to success when Serena lost her touch.
After Williams’ failures in 2012, she decided to train under Patrick Mouratoglou and the Frenchman became the force which helped her revive her career. With Mouratoglou, Williams went up to win ten of her record 23 Grand Slam singles titles.
Apart from Williams, Patrick Mouratoglou is also coaching two young prodigies Stefanos Tsitsipas and Coco Gauff, who have already made a name for themselves and might take the top spot in the future.
#7. Ivan Lendl
Ivan Lendl is a great Czech-American legend, who is a former World No.1 and has bagged eight Grand Slam titles. He was also the first player to appear in a record eight consecutive US Open finals. But apart from his successful player career, Lendl also had a successful career as a coach.
After retiring as a player, Lendl returned to the court in 2011 but as a coach for Andy Murray, who lost his all first three Grand Slam finals. Many pundits even predicted Murray can’t win major titles. However, his fateful encounter with Lendl changed his career 360 degrees, as Murray not only won the first two Grand Slam titles of his career. But the partnership ended in 2014, after their contract expired.
The Czech-American coach made a comeback in Murray’s team in 2016, and this time Andy his second Wimbledon and first ATP World Tour final but also reached the World Number One.
#6. Tony Roche
Tony Roche is one of the most successful tennis coaches, who have trained multiple World No. 1s like Ivan Lendl, Patrick Rafter, Roger Federer and Lleyton Hewitt. Further, his apprentice list also consists a former World No. 4, Jelena Dokic.
The Australian coach even had a successful career as a player, winning one Grand Slam singles title and 15 Grand Slam doubles titles. Roche was even ranked World No. 2. However, after retiring from the sport, he shone even more as a coach.
Roche has been the coach to Ivan Lendl, who himself will later become a great coach, Lendl sought the help of the Australian coach to improve his volleys to win the Wimbledon. Meanwhile, the volley master Roger Federer also asked for Roche’s guidance but for playing on clay, as the Australian had bagged a Roland Garros.
#5. Harry Hopman
Harry Hopman is a legend in tennis but not only as a player but also as a successful coach. The Australian legend has trained the great American legend, John McEnroe.
However, training McEnroe was not the biggest achievement for the Australian coach but his success at the Davis Cup. Hopman not only captained but also acted as a coach for a team full of exceptional players like Frank Sedgman, John Newcombe, Lew Hoad, Ken Rosewall, Rod Laver, Tony Roche and Roy Emerson. Further, the Australian player-coach led his team winning the Davis Cup 16 times.
#4. Nick Bollettieri
The American coach is a legend who not only raised some phenomenal players, who will go on becoming the greatest players of the world but also pioneered the concept of tennis boarding school.
Bollettieri guided Monica Seles, Jim Courier and Andre Agassi to the World No. 1. Later in life, the American coach also lead the likes of Marcelo Ríos, Mary Pierce, Anna Kournikova, Maria Sharapova, Jelena Janković, Max Mirnyi and Williams sisters to great success.
Nick Bollettieri is also the founder of the most prestigious tennis school, IMG Academy, which continues developing players who might dominate the sport in future and can even make it to the top spot.
#3. Lennart Bergelin
You might have heard this name associated with the Swedish legend, Bjorn Borg. The Swedish coach Lennart Bergelin might not have a successful career as a player but his accomplishments as a coach can never be forgotten.
Bergelin helped Bjorg to win 11 of his 16 Grand Slam singles titles. Further, the coach-player duo became the first combination to ever win more than ten Grand Slam titles in the Open era. Under the Swedish coach, Borg even became the first player to win three major titles without losing a set.
Lennart Bergelin gave one of the best players in the history and his pupil still holds numerous unbroken records. Even Bjorn Borg has mentioned his success wasn’t possible without his coach and even mentioned Bergelin was a father-figure to him.
#2. Toni Nadal
The name itself should be an enough hint about this Spanish Coach and his success in coaching. Toni Nadal is not only the uncle of Rafael Nadal, but also the man who made the “King of Clay.”
Nadal is a very strict coach, who is known for his authoritarian attitude and ethics. Even his nephew and former student, Rafael Nadal, reported returning home crying after his tennis practices. However, Toni mentioned his methods help the young players to grow stronger and learn to respect the sport.
Rafael Nadal won 15 Grand Slam singles titles of his record 20 titles, including his ten out of 13 Roland Garros titles. So there is no doubt Toni Nadal is the force behind the rising of the “Clay King”. Currently, Nadal has taken the young American prodigy, Félix Auger-Aliassime, under his wing.
#1. Marian Vajda
Marian Vajda might be the most successful coach in the history to ever exist. The Slovak coach’s name is often associated with the current ATP Rank Number One.
Vajda has been the head coach of the Serbian maestro Novak Djokovic throughout his career. The player-coach combo has won the most number of major titles, a record 19 Grand Slam singles titles, surpassing the record of Borg-Bergelin and Rafael-Toni Nadal.
Marian Vajda for his phenomenal coaching was awarded the best coach by the Olympic Committee of Serbia in 2010 and 2011. Further, the Slovak coach also won the 2018 ATP Coach of the Year. We might expect his records will increase, as Djokovic and Vajda are preparing to claim their third Grand Slam in 2021 at Wimbledon.
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