Goran Ivanisevic Apparently Confirms Novak Djokovic’s Future Coach as He Breaks Silence On Their Unexpected Split

Published 04/02/2024, 2:58 PM EDT

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Novak Djokovic‘s limited participation was already testing fans’ patience this year when another shocking update came up. Announcing the separation from his long-time coach Goran Ivanisevic, the tennis star not only made a major change in his coaching team but also left the tennis community with one common question: Who will be primarily coaching the world no.1 now?

Ahead of the Monte-Carlo Masters, Djokovic’s long-time friend and Davis Cup teammate, Nenad Zimonjic, was spotted training alongside him. But ever since DJoker posted the update of his separation on Instagram, there wasn’t any reaction from Ivanisevic. Finally breaking the silence, the Croatian came forward to answer the queries that the fans carried.

Ivanisevic expressed confidence in Zimonjić’s ability to support Djokovic effectively, and stated, “I don’t know for how much longer Novak plans to keep on playing, but the perfect person is with him at the moment – Ziki (Nenad Zimonjic). He is a great friend of mine, we went through a lot together and I love him. He has a vast tennis knowledge, but what is most important – he knows Novak really well…”


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Ivanisevic also emphasized the importance of Zimonjić’s existing chemistry with Djokovic, ending the thoughts about the entry of a new character in the story for now. Suggesting that a new coach might struggle to adapt to the Djoker’s needs quickly, he said, “…At the moment, Novak doesn’t need someone completely new, who is yet to get to know him. Let’s say 10 days pass, Novak ‘goes crazy’ and this new coach is left wondering what is going on.”

Djokovic’s former coach also revealed why Zimonjic is the right person to stay with the World No.1 right now. Ivanisevic said, “I have a theory – Man from the Balkans can coach anyone but only someone from this our region can coach a Balkan player. Marian (Vajda) is Slovak, we’re close and we know each other well. Boris (Becker) also worked well with Novak, but his tennis IQ is off the charts… Ziki can help him tennis-wise. Novak does know everything already, but it will be refreshing for him to maybe hear the same thing from someone else, with a different approach. Ziki knows Novak’s mentality really well, they collaborated in the Davis Cup as well.”

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During Zimonjic’s playing career, he won the Wimbledon doubles in 2008 and 2009 and in 2010 he grabbed the French Open title. Apart from the Davis Cup, he also played the doubles with the Djoker in the 2016 Olympic Games. Despite Djokovic not formally appointing a permanent replacement for Ivanisevic, the responsibility lies currently on the shoulders of Zimonjić.

Djokovic, who is preparing for the upcoming clay season, starting with Monte Carlo, is set to resume the challenges, with his temporary coach backing him full-time. Besides Goran Ivanisevic’s comment on Novak Djokovic’s current coach, the Serb himself also answered fan queries.


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Novak Djokovic denies bringing in any replacement for Ivanisevic

Mentioning the depth of his bond with his ex-coach, Djokovic said, “First of all, Goran is my friend for life, mine and of my family’s. He is a very dear person for me, the end of our professional collaboration doesn’t mean that our friendship stops.”

On being asked about whether he will be looking for a replacement, Djokovic said, “I still don’t have a clear idea who a new coach would be, or whether there will be one at all. I’ve had coaches since I was a kid, now I am trying to feel by myself what I need, what I feel most comfortable with. You will be informed in case someone joins the team.”


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As the Serb made it clear that there will be no new faces in his coaching team for now, Ivanisevic’s statement makes it evident that Zimonjic will be taking charge for now.


Written by:

Akshay Kapoor


One take at a time

Akshay Kapoor, a tennis writer at EssentiallySports, excels in crafting pieces that set new trends. His analytical skills riding on the back of certification in Digital Marketing help inject in-depth research as he covers the business undertakings of Tennis stars. Akshay’s articles touch the entire tennis spectrum, from iconic figures like Djokovic and emerging talents such as Holger Rune and Coco Gauff.
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Edited by:

Arunima Bhanot