x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Maria Sharapova hires Jimmy Connors as new tennis coach

World No 2 makes announcement a day after splitting with Thomas Hogstedt.

Maria Sharapova has completed a career grand slam. Dennis Grombkowski / Bongarts / Getty Images
Maria Sharapova has completed a career grand slam. Dennis Grombkowski / Bongarts / Getty Images

PARIS // Maria Sharapova hired Jimmy Connors, the former world No 1 and eight-time grand slam title winner, as her new coach on Saturday, just a day after splitting with Thomas Hogstedt.

"I am happy to announce that Jimmy Connors will be my new coach. I have known Jimmy for many years and we briefly worked together in 2008 just before the Australian Open," said Sharapova, the world No 2, on her website.

"I am really excited about our new partnership and looking forward to the upcoming tournaments."

Sharapova had been working with Swedish 49-year-old Hogstedt since 2010 when the former world No 1 completed a career grand slam with victory at the 2012 French Open.

But at Wimbledon two weeks ago, she crashed out of the second round, losing to Portuguese qualifier Michelle Larcher de Brito, the world No 131.

Connors, 60, previously coached fellow American Andy Roddick, but their 19-month relationship ended in March, 2008.

"Excited to be working with 4 time GS champion @MariaSharapova Adding to that number is the goal. Looking forward to some fun & hard work," tweeted Connors.

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