Pliskova hires Venezuelan coach Vallverdu

Karolina Pliskova returns a shot back to Simona Halep (not pictured) during the semi-finals at the Miami Open at Miami Open Tennis Complex March 28, 2019. — Picture courtesy of Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports via Reuters
Karolina Pliskova returns a shot back to Simona Halep (not pictured) during the semi-finals at the Miami Open at Miami Open Tennis Complex March 28, 2019. — Picture courtesy of Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports via Reuters

PRAGUE, Nov 25 — World number two Karolina Pliskova said today she had hired Venezuelan coach Daniel Vallverdu to replace Spaniard Conchita Martinez whom she had sacked earlier this month.

“He was one of my priorities from the start,” Pliskova said on her website.

Vallverdu, 33, previously worked with Andy Murray from 2010 to 2014 and was part of the Ivan Lendl-led team that helped the Scot to win Olympic gold and the US Open in 2012 as well as Wimbledon in 2013.

Vallverdu also worked with Thomas Berdych and Grigor Dimitrov and this year joined Magnus Norman’s team coaching Stan Wawrinka.

“He’s had fantastic results, he understands tennis like few others and I am convinced he has a lot to offer to me,” added the 27-year-old Czech who is still seeking her maiden Grand Slam title.

Pliskova said former Ukraine Fed Cup player Olga Savchuk had also joined her team ahead of a training camp in Tenerife and her first 2020 tournament in Brisbane where she will defend the title.

Pliskova, the 2016 US Open finalist, parted ways with 1994 Wimbledon champion Martinez after a season that saw her win four WTA tournaments and reach the semi-finals at the Australian Open and the WTA Finals. — AFP

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