London: Wimbledon champion Andy Murray sprang a surprise as he appointed Amelie Mauresmo as his new coach on Sunday.
Murray’s management team announced in a statement that Mauresmo will initially work with the Scot for his grass-court campaign, which gets under way at Queen’s Club this week in the build-up to his defence of the Wimbledon crown.
“I’m excited by the possibilities of the new partnership and Amelie is someone I have always looked up to and admired,” Murray wrote on his official website. “She’s faced adversity plenty of times in her career, but was an amazing player and won major titles, including Wimbledon.”
The 27-year-old’s decision to hire a woman will be seen by some as a gamble, but Mauresmo, who won Wimbledon in 2006 before retiring in 2009, already has experience of coaching a male player after a spell with compatriot Michael Llodra.
She retains close links to the sport as coach of the France Fed Cup team and also coached Marion Bartoli when she won Wimbledon last year.
Murray has no doubts about her credentials. “I have a very strong coaching team already in place, but I think Amelie brings with her experience and tactical expertise and will push us all to improve,” he said.