London: Andy Murray and Ivan Lendl have ‘mutually agreed’ to end their two-year coaching relationship.
The British No. 1, who broke his Grand Slam drought under the guidance of Lendl, has said he “will now take some time with the team to consider the next steps and how we progress from here”.
Lendl, who coached Murray to become the first British man to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936, said he felt it was the right time to “concentrate on some of my own projects”.
Lendl said: “Working with Andy over the last two years has been a fantastic experience for me.
“He is a first class guy. Having helped him achieve his goal of winning major titles, I feel like it is time for me to concentrate on some of my own projects moving forward including playing more events around the world which I am really enjoying.
“I will always be in Andy’s corner and wish him nothing but great success as he too goes into a new phase of his career.”
While Wimbledon was the stand-out moment of the partnership, Lendl helped Murray break his Grand Slam drought at the US Open in 2012 which came off the back of an Olympic gold medal at the London 2012 Games.
Murray, who is preparing to defend his title in Miami, said in a statement on his Twitter page: “I’m eternally grateful to Ivan for all his hard work over the past two years, the most successful of my career so far. As a team, we’ve learned a lot and it will definitely be of benefit in the future. I’ll take some time with the team to consider the next steps and how we progress from here.”
Murray, 26, appointed Lendl as his coach on December 31, 2011 after working with a number of others.
The likes of Leon Smith, Mark Petchey, Brad Gilbert, Miles Maclagan and Alex Corretja had all sat in his corner, but linking up with Lendl was seen as a shrewd move.
Like Murray, Lendl lost his first four Grand Slam finals before going on to top-level glory and results dictated that their partnership was working well.
“He’s made me learn more from the losses than I did before and he’s always been very honest with me and believed in me when other people maybe didn’t,” Murray said of the 54 year-old Czech in the wake of his Wimbledon win.
“Ivan’s been very patient, as I’m not always easy to deal with. He’s also honest with me. If I work hard he’s happy, if I don’t he’s disappointed and he’ll tell me. He has got me mentally slightly different going into these big matches.”
The split will take many by surprise, although there has been a downturn in Murray’s results since Wimbledon. That, though, can largely be attributed to the back injury he had and the surgery he has since undergone.