Andy Murray’s former coach gives his verdict on off-court coaching

Jamie Delgado and Andy Murray

Andy Murray’s former coach Jamie Delgado has given his verdict on the decision to allow in-match coaching in the men’s game.

Speaking exclusively to Tennis365 at an event to promote Game4Padel, Delgado suggested he was not a fan of the move that allows players to liaise with their coaching box during a match.

Coaching from the stands has long been a topic of debate, but Degado, who worked with Murray from 2016 until last year, told us that he does not believe it enhances the game at the highest level.

“I have always had a feeling that a tennis player has to work it out for themselves,” Delgado told Tennis365.

“It’s something that sets tennis apart. I know there has been pressure from TV to have more interaction, but the best players in the world are out there and we want to see if they can figure it out.

“Coming out with different strategies and how they can change it is part of the game for me, so I’m not a huge fan of coaching.

“I always laugh at comments from people who say everyone is doing it anyway as I don’t think they are. Those comments come from those who are probably doing it!

“Who knows, a coach might say something to the player and it might be the wrong thing. That will make it worse.

“So if you asked me whether I felt it was good for players to be allowed to have coaching during a match, I’d say no.”

The ATP announced in June that ‘off-court’ coaching would be trialed for the second half of the season.

The trial permits coaching from designated coach seats during qualifying and main draw matches at ATP Tour events, starting from the week of 11 July 2022.

The trial also took place at the US Open and will run through to the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals in Turin in November.

Various coaching rules have been trialed across the sport in recent years, including on-court coaching and coaching via headsets.

The announcement brought alignment for the second half of the season across the ATP Tour, US Open and WTA Tour, where an off-court coaching trial is already in place.

There has been mixed reaction to the decision, with Wimbledon runner-up Nick Kyrgois among those voicing his announce.

“Completely disagree,” he declared on Twitter as he reacted to the prospect of coaching

“Tennis loses one of the only unique traits that no other sport had. The player had to figure out things on his own. That was the beauty of it.

“What happens if a high-profile player versus a low-ranked player who doesn’t have or afford a coach?”

Leaving coach Patrick Mouratoglou has never been shy to express that he is in favour of coaching and welcomed the decision by the ATP and he has welcomed the move.

“Congratulations to the ATP for ‘legalizing’ a practice that has been going on at almost every match for decades. No more hypocrisy,” he tweeted.