30
Jun
11

Ana Ivanovic has hired Nigel Sears to be her coach.

Ana to work with Nigel Sears

Sears will step down as the head of women’s coaching for the Britain’s Lawn Tennis Association (LTA). A veteran, Sears also coached former top-10 players Amanda Coetzer and Daniela Hantuchova and is the father of Andy Murray’s longtime girlfriend, Kim. Ivanovic has known Sears for a couple of years. “I couldn’t be happier,” Ivanovic said in a statement. “I’ve admired Nigel for some time now, and I can’t wait to start working with him on court. t was important that I waited for the right coach, and we are both excited about the challenges ahead.”

Both parties are said to anticipate a long-term relationship. It is likely that Sears signed a long-term contract and is making at least what he was at the LTA, as he has a family. Ivanovic has repeatedly said this year that she wanted a long term commitment from a coach after she was unable to secure one from Heinz Gunhardt last year and recently was unable to convince adidas Player Development coach Darren Cahill to spend more time with her. The former No. 1 has been through a series of personal changes over the past seven months. After Gunhardt declined to become her full time coach because he wanted to retain his television work and spend time with his family, she hired coach Antonio van Grichen, the former tutor of Victoria Azarenka and Vera Zvonareva, but they parted ways after just two months in February.

She and Sears will collaborate in finding her a new physical trainer, but she will not hire a full time hitting partner, instead employing different people throughout the upcoming U.S. summer hard court season. Ivanovic is currently on vacation and will begin to work with Sears upon her return in a couple of weeks. She is scheduled to play Stanford, San Diego, Toronto and Cincinnati prior to the US Open.

 

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