Despite recent accusations that her coach (who also happens to be her father) Piotr is working her too hard this tennis season, Caroline Wozniacki is more than happy to keep it in the family and is continuing to retain her father as her permanent coach.
The former world number 1’s disappointing performance this season has led a number of tennis insiders to voice their opinions on everything from her abilities to her father’s coaching style. Even the legendary Martina Navratilova has gotten in on the act, commenting that she doesn’t deserve the world No 1 spot because she doesn’t beat top players often enough. And even though critics believe her father makes her compete in too many tournaments, the Dane is more than happy to keep taking her father’s advice.
When Woznacki was still the top-seeded player at the end of last year, she did begin working with a new coach – Ricardo Sanchez – however this relationship lasted less than two months and by February of this year Piotr had again taken the helm of coach first and dad second. Although Piotr has said that he would be happy to step away, it is Caroline who is insisting on keeping him by her side reportedly telling him “please don’t change things. For me the best situation is if we stay like this. ”
Piotr, who like many father coaches is self-taught, has news for the critics who do believe he is pushing her too hard to achieve that elusive Grand Slam title. He’s advised the current world number 8 to retire when she hits her mid twenties, whether she’s won that Grand Slam title or not. Reportedly telling her “professional sport is not good for your body…your tennis career is very short…for me, if you have won Grand Slam titles or achieved your dreams, stop when you are 25 or 26”, Piotr is all too aware that the clock is ticking when it comes to how long his daughter is able to sustain such a demanding lifestyle.
Despite a Grand Slam title remaining just out of her grasp so far in her career, Wozniacki is by no means an under-achiever. Holding the world number 1 spot for a total of 67 weeks, she has won a total of 18 tournaments and still remains in the top 8 despite not winning a tournament for the past 9 months. Having practiced with both Murray and Djokovic, Piotr believes that she can learn a lot from these top players, especially Murray who’s tennis Piotr says is “close to Caroline’s”. The 21-year-old has a few years left before her potential retirement, which should be plenty of time for her to reach her true potential.