Tennis

Agassi to coach Djokovic at French Open

Novak Djokovic revealed on Sunday that US great Andre Agassi would be his new coach, but said they did not yet have a "long-term commitment".

"I spoke to Andre the last couple weeks on the phone, and we decided to get together in Paris. So he's gonna be there," said Djokovic, who was beaten 6-4, 6-3 in the Rome Masters final on Sunday by 20-year-old German Alexander Zverev.

"We'll see what the future brings. We are both excited to work together and see where it takes us.

"We don't have any long-term commitment.

"It's just us trying to get to know each other in Paris a little bit."

Djokovic, who celebrated his 30th birthday yesterday, returns to Paris this weekend to defend his French Open title but he is looking to improve his clay-court game after an inconsistent spell.

He parted with long-time coach Marian Vajda earlier this month, having also ended a three-year relationship with six-time Grand Slam champion Boris Becker at the end of last season, in a bid to get back to his brilliant best.

Becker took to Twitter to back Djokovic's decision.

"Excellent choice from @DjokerNole for bringing @AndreAgassi into his team ! Wishing both lots of luck in the future together!," the German wrote.

Given his performances of late, he will be hoping 47-year-old Agassi, an eight-time Grand Slam champion, can make a positive contribution.

The Serb was outplayed by Spaniard Rafael Nadal on his way to defeat in the semi-finals of the Madrid Masters last week.

Despite reaching the final in Rome on Sunday, Djokovic looked well below his clinical best before losing to German starlet Zverev.

Next up is the defence of his title in the French capital, and Djokovic added: "He (Agassi) will not stay the whole tournament. He's gonna stay only to a certain time, and then we'll see after that what's gonna happen.

"Obviously, Andre is someone that I have tremendous respect for as a person and as a player. He has been through everything that I'm going through." - AFP

French Opennovak djokovic