Tennis: Murray backs female coaches

Andy Murray talks to media during day three of The Internazionali BNL d'Italia. Photo / Getty Images
Andy Murray talks to media during day three of The Internazionali BNL d'Italia. Photo / Getty Images

Andy Murray hopes his split with Amelie Mauresmo isn't seen as a failure for women coaching top tennis players.

The British star improved as a clay-court competitor under the former World No.1 player-turned mentor but failed to bolster his collection of Grand Slam titles.

"It did work. For two years the results that we had were good," Murray said at the Italian Open on Wednesday, a day after the break-up was announced.

"Maybe unless I win a Grand Slam, then maybe ultimately that's how people may judge whether it worked or not but when she first came into the team, I was really struggling."

Murray became the first high-profile player to hire a woman as a coach when he took on Mauresmo in June 2014. He won his first clay-court titles last year in Munich and Madrid.

"When she came on board, my results actually really picked up," Murray added.

"I mean the time we spent together was positive. It's just a shame I wasn't able to win one of the major events because that's what both of us wanted.

"Roger (Federer) stopped working with Stefan Edberg at the end of last year because Stefan Edberg wanted to spend more time with his family. ... No one batted an eyelid about that," Murray said.

Mauresmo said on Tuesday "dedicating enough time along with the travel has been a challenge for me". The Frenchwoman gave birth to her first child in August and took six months off.

"So, in my opinion, it's nothing to do with Amelie being a woman," Murray added.

"It's the case of it takes a lot of time to do the job well and properly. It's not easy to do that for four, five years in a row."

With the French Open starting in 12 days, Murray doesn't have an immediate replacement.

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