Ever since Andy Murray announced the appointment of Amelie Mauresmo as his coach a couple of years ago there was a surprising and disappointing response to one of the world’s top tennis players hiring a women as his coach and even though they have now split there still seems to be plenty of talk about the two.
I remember at the time the outcry because a women was coaching a man, I didn’t realise we were still living in the dark ages and maybe one day the rest of the world might wake up in the 21st century.
Amelie took over at a difficult time for Murray the Brit was suffering with this back issue and ended up having surgery at the end of 2014 on his back and the recovery and results from the British number one was exceptional. Towards the end of 2014 he fell outside the top 10 in the world and less than year later was back at 2 and 3 in the world and Mauresmo guided him to wins against Djokovic and Nadal to claim Masters 1000 titles in Montreal and Madrid respectively.
Success in tennis shouldn’t just be measured on Grand Slams won, there is a bigger picture. Of course it would have been nice for Andy to win a major but the success of the partnership shouldn’t be just down to majors won.
I was surprised by the comments from Serena Williams coach Patrick Mouratoglou in the Radio Times with the world number one’s coach saying:
“It’s strange for a guy to hire a woman”
“Nothing bad about women, but it’s strange because usually they don’t know the men’s game as well as the women’s game, and it’s a very macho world.”
“It was very courageous of Andy to hire her. I’m not saying it was a mistake, but he didn’t win anything major with Amelie.”
“If Andy had won two or three Grand Slams with Amelie, we would see it differently”.
I think some of the comments made are outdated and unfair as apparently women’s don’t know the men’s game as well as the women’s. I didn’t realise there were that major difference between men and women playing the sport…
I do believe to say that if Andy had won two of three majors the partnership and success of it would have been seen different is silly. Like I said I think you have to look at the bigger picture, why does everyone seem to go on about Mauresmo and Murray. Edberg and Federer split at the beginning of the year and never won a Grand Slam title together so was that partnership a success relating to those comments? What about Lindsay Davenport linking up with Madison Keys? Madison did well at the majors, didn’t win but Davenport helped her reach the next step of her career.
It’s essential to look at the bigger picture with every coaching partnership. I don’t think it was brave or courageous of Murray to appoint Mauresmo but at the time it was the right decision. His tennis on clay improved, winning titles and his climb back up the rankings after surgery was excellent.