World no.11 Gael Monfils has hired Gunter Bresnik, the former coach of Austrian Dominic Thiem. Monfils has also brought on Richard Ruckelshausen as part of his new coaching team.
Frenchman Monfils has not yet officially commented on about the new appointments, the ATP website has listed both Bresnik and Ruckelshausen as his coaches.
Austrian Bresnik was seen with Monfils on the practice courts of Dubai earlier this month. In a recent interview, Bresnik mentioned that Monfils had trained with him during the off-season, but didn’t confirm whether it was a formal or long-term arrangement.
The former world no.6 will be seen in action at the ATP Cup. He is going in as France’s No.1 player. While Bresnik has not travelled to Melbourne for the upcoming Australian summer, Monfils has been accompanied by Ruckelshausen. Ruckelshausen, a former pro himself, will also take on the role of captain of the French team for the ATP Cup.
Gael Monfils will be hoping that the new coaching set-up will help him move back into the top 10 and revive his winning form as soon as possible. He started the 2020 season by winning titles in Montpellier and Rotterdam. But he struggled for the rest of the pandemic-interrupted year.
He went on a horrible streak of four successive first-round exits after the US Open, and called time on his season at Vienna.
Gunter Bresnik and Dominic Thiem had an ugly split in 2019
As a coach, Gunter Bresnik has had a prolific career. He has worked with several top players, including Boris Becker, Henri Leconte, Patrick McEnroe and Ernests Gulbis.
Despite linked with such greats, Bresnik’s longest and most successful coaching relationship has been with current World No. 3 Dominic Thiem. Bresnik coached Thiem right from the time he was eight years old until the pair went their separate ways in 2019.
The split was always in negative limelight. The two parties are currently engaged in a court battle. Gunter Bresnik has, in fact, sued Dominic Thiem for 450,000 euros.
Bresnik acted as both coach and manager of the Austrian during their partnership. He now believes he is entitled to a share of Thiem’s income that has arisen from contracts that were signed when he acted as his manager.
Reports suggest that the two parties may come to an agreement off-court. The dispute resolutaion will reportedly be led by a judicial mediator in the last week of February, without the presence of lawyers on either side.