Andy Murray has had to postpone his ambitious goal of finding a coach before the Sunday French Open start as the Scot admits that it is taking more time than expected to line up a new mentor after splitting with Ivan Lendl two months ago.
Murray, seeded seventh at Roland Garros in the clay-court grand slam which he missed last year with back pain, did hint to the BBC that he is moving closer to lining up a new advisor.
He added that there is one name at the top of his short list and that he has chatted to the person in question.
“There’s always a few complications but as long as the desire from both people is to work together then hopefully it can happen soon,” he told the broadcaster.
Among the names mentioned in connection with the 27-year-old Wimbledon champion: John McEnroe and Mats Wilander, former legends like eight-time grand slam winner Lendl. Also in the mix are professional coaches Bob Brett and Larry Stefanki.
Murray said in Paris that no new name is likely to emerge until his Paris run is done and he turns his attention to the grass, starting at London’s Queen’s club.
“I wouldn’t expect anything over the next few days, obviously,” Murray said. “It’ll be whenever it’s right, basically. For me, it’s not about rushing into something. It’ “I chat to a few people about it, but ultimately it has to come down to the player/coach relationship, that’s very important. There are people that I can speak to about things. I have met a lot of good people that I respect and listen to their opinions on the tennis tour.
“I’m not in a panic to get someone, but it’s a lot closer than it was.” Play gets underway on Sunday with four top 10 men in action.
Fourth seed Roger Federer will be the men’s headliner as the 2009 winner opens against the man he beat in the Australian first round in January, Slovak Lukas Lacko. Sixth seed Tomas Berdych faces Canadian qualifier Peter Polansky.
Canada’s eight seed and Rome semi-finalist Milos Raonic starts with Australian wild card Nick Kyrgios; John Isner, seeded tenth, faces Pierre-Hugues Herbert with the crowd totally on his opponent’s side.
Both Williams sisters start in the women’s draw, with top seeded holder Serena Williams playing Alize Lim of France and elder sister Venus playing Swiss teenager Belinda Bencic.
Sunday order of play at the French Open
Chatrier Agnieszka Radwanska, 3, Poland v Shuai Zhang, China Lukas Lacko, Slovakia v Roger Federer, 4, Switzerland Serena Williams, 1, US v Alize Lim, France Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 13, France v Edouard Roger-Vasselin, France Lenglen Milos Raonic, 8, Canada v Nick Kyrgios, Australia Belinda Bencic, Switrzerland v Venus Williams, US Pierre-Hugues Herbert, France v John Isner, 10, US Katarzyna Piter, Poland v Angelique Kerber, 8, Germany Court 1 Daniela Hantuchova, Slovakia v Jovana Jaksic, Serbia Tomas Berdych, 6, Czech Republic v Peter Polansky, Canada Amandine Hesse, France v Yvonne Meusburger, Austria Jeremy Chardy, France v Daniel Gimeno-Traver, Spain