Connors and Roddick – Is the split inevitable?
Posted by tennisplanet on July 25, 2007
I think Connors’s efforts have plateaued. There is no more room. That’s how good Roddick can get with Connors, and his partying and laziness and the reputation of ‘not the hardest working’ player on the tour.
His arrogance and extreme efforts to empahsize more, on how he looks than how he plays, is just bringing back the harvest, from what he is sowing.
Connors may have already decided on the move, and may be just hoping to get some credit for Roddick’s win at the US Open. Just reaching the final there is not going to cut it anymore. He now has to absolutely win a major, to just merely get traction, to halt the slippery slide.
Any faltering here, and all hell might break loose, to take the wheels from under him for good.
Roddick needs to look at the above scenario, and use it as motivation to reach higher. He knows his No. 3 ranking is gone for good, and he is now fighting Davydenko for the No. 4 spot.
Roddick can regain confidence by winning a couple of tune up events. Maybe he needs to enter in smaller events, to get himself going, after the heart breaking loss at Wimbledon. Once he gets the momentum going, his chances improve dramatically.
After all, this is where he won his first major, this is his favorite surface, he reached the final last year, he will have the home court advantage – a lot is going his way. With younger and talented players rearing to go, it is last chance for a title here.
Connors with his immense experience and success at the US Open (5 titles), knows how small the window is. He would like to move out of the relationship gracefully, before it gets ugly.
I feel Connors came on board at least two years late. But if he can still get Roddick to win the US Open, he would have achieved a lot in a very short time. His value as a coach in the tennis world would soar to great heights.
Not that it hasn’t already. But that would cap a very cleverly crafted expedition.
I wouldn’t be surprised, if he is not the top dog for coaching position, once he is done with Roddick. To fully utilize his expertise and new found talent, he needs a fresher canvas. He has a tremendous future as a coach, primarily because there is none on the market with his credentials.
When he says it needs to be done this way, many players would believe it just on that quality of his. Maybe it will start a trend, and former greats will not hesitate to come down, and wet their feet, in what seems to me a logical conclusion after so many years at the top.
I heard that Wilander has taken up similar duties. It is a trend that the ATP needs to encourage, by maybe putting in place extra incentives for these greats of the game to come down from their Ivy Castle. Those incentives have to more than just monetary. When you are considered one of the greats, your ego soars too, and that I think is the biggest impediment for these immortals to swallow.
But I think once they are on the market, and have the ‘available for hire’ sign on their back, they will be gobbled up very quickly.
Will this be a turning point for Roddick or will it be his last hurrah?