The 2017 season has not played out the way British number one Andy Murray would have hoped. Coping with a hip injury for a majority of the season, the Scot has not been able to hit first gear and has plummeted down the world rankings.
Instead, the British gold medallist has managed only one title this year, claiming victory in Dubai. Looking into the 2018 season, it appears he has made a big decision, one that will considerably improve his 2018 season, or so he hopes.
That decision is to split from long-term mentor, tennis icon and a man who many feel Murray owes a lot of his success to, Ivan Lendl.
It is hard to argue with the statistics on this one, Murray has won all of his Grand Slams under Lendl (3), in a time when he also won two Olympic golds. That unprecedented success saw Lendl thrust into the "super coach" hall of fame along the likes of John McEnroe and Boris Becker.
Of course, this success followed an initial split between the two in March 2014, the reunion sparked a happy and winning formula, yet in 2017 there was little evidence of this. Lendl spent the majority of his time in the US, spending very little time with the 30-year-old.
Murray announced the split via his official website.
"I'm thankful to Ivan for all his help and guidance over the years, we've had great success and learned a lot as a team.
"My focus now is on getting ready for Australia with the team I have in place and getting back to competing."
Murray also added that the split was entirely "mutual" and Lendl was not adding fuel to fire as he simply said: “I wish Andy well going forward. We had a great run and a lot of fun.”
Whether or not the split was actually mutual will, of course, be something that is debated over the coming months. Many of the fans will feel it most certainly isn't as rumours have been circulating regarding the significant pay rise Lendl apparently demanded.
Hopefully, this decision will be out of Murray's mind as he looks to get fit and prepared for the 2018 season, a season he will be hoping he can challenge for that world number one position once again.
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