“I was ready to even die for him,” Goran Ivanisevic stays true to Novak Djokovic in the aftermath of their long-drawn partnership and brutal criticism from fans

“I was ready to even die for him,” Goran Ivanisevic stays true to Novak Djokovic in the aftermath of their long-drawn partnership and brutal criticism from fans

The Croatian coach remains loyal to his close friend Djokovic despite their surprising split after nearly six years together on the Tour.

“I was ready to even die for him,” Goran Ivanisevic stays true to Novak Djokovic in the aftermath of their long-drawn partnership and brutal criticism from fans

Novak Djokovic and Goran Ivanisevic (Image via IMAGO)

Former World No. 2 and top coach Goran Ivanisevic has finally addressed the much-awaited question about his split with Novak Djokovic. The duo had been working together since 2018. The Croatian had helped Nole win 12 Grand Slam singles titles to take his tally to a record-breaking 24 titles, the most in the Open Era.

Their decision to end their coaching partnership was quite shocking, as it was out of the blue. While the Serb was yet to win a title this season, no one thought it would lead to the two parting ways. With many fan theories and speculations going around on the real reason, Ivanisevic has broken his silence.

After commenting on the ‘real reason’ why the two split, Ivanisevic also clarified his feelings about Djokovic occasionally shouting at him during matches. The visuals often infuriated fans against Nole, who found them disrespectful towards the former Wimbledon winner.

During his interview with Sasa Ozmo, Ivanisevic also commented on the whole vaccination debacle. The World No. 1’s refusal to get vaccinated against COVID-19 saw him get deported from Australia a few hours before his first-round match at the Australian Open in 2022.

He was also banned from playing in the USA, as the country didn’t allow unvaccinated foreign individuals. All of this had a harrowing effect not only on Djokovic but on the coaches too. Recalling the tough times, Ivanisevic expressed his true feelings and also showed his loyalty towards the reigning US Open winner.

Novak, when all the cameras are off and when he is most himself, he is a good person, he has a big heart. I was always ready to even die for him if it were necessary, he was fighting against the whole world.

Said Ivanisevic.

The Croatian remembered the things that were said and written against the Serb during the whole fiasco. While he thanked the ones who offered their support, he wasn’t forgiving enough for the critics.

It wasn’t easy being his trainer in that moment, everywhere we went people were looking at us, at him like a villain. Of course, there were also people who gave their support, who came up to us telling us to stay strong. But there were many who were very rude, aggressive.

Goran Ivanisevic happy with the ‘way’ things were ended with Novak Djokovic

Djokovic was the obvious title favorite for this year’s Sunshine Double. A champion at both events and returning to the competition for the first time since 2019, there was a lot of excitement for his comeback. But the happiness was short-lived.

Goran Ivanisevic and Novak DjokovicGoran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic (Image via IMAGO)

Djokovic was defeated in the third round in Indian Wells by a lucky loser and World No. 123 Luca Nardi. It was instantly labeled as one of the biggest upsets in the sport. Shortly after the defeat, Nole announced his withdrawal from the Miami Masters, surprising many fans.

However, for Ivanisevic, these results weren’t disappointing. He praised Djokovic for having already won everything in tennis, which makes it difficult for him to remain motivated. With reports claiming the two were having a fight in Indian Wells, the Croatian’s answer shut down all the rumors.

He wanted something different, to be more with family. We sat down together the next day to talk and I’m really glad that we did, after these five years in which we went through all sorts together, it was the only proper way to do it. Not by texting or calling.

Said Ivanisevic, going in detail about the split.

The 52-year-old went on to explain how things were talked out between them to conclude going separate ways. Having been through thick and thin, friendship and relationship were more important to both of them and that led to a relaxed environment before coming to the decision.

We sat down nicely, relaxed, we were laughing and talking, and for me it was important to tell him certain things about how I felt, he told me how he felt, and all of that was really nice. Fiver years I was beside him through the good, the bad, the detainment, the mayhem, everything.

Concluded Ivanisevic.

With Djokovic being the fourth student of Ivanisevic, the Croatian is yet to confirm if he will return immediately with a new player. As for the Serb, he will remain without a head coach for a while and not rush into the decision.

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