Boris Becker will always remain part of the Wimbledon folklore. The German won his first Grand Slam as an unseeded 17-year old at the 1985 Wimbledon becoming the first German to lift the trophy at the All-England Club.
He came back and defended his 1985 title at the 1986 Wimbledon and again won his 3rd and last Wimbledon title in 1989. He also won the 1989 US Open and later won two Australian Open titles in 1991 and 1996. Despite his 3 titles, he also shares a special connection to the Championships, residing at walking distance from the All-England Club.
In a recent interview, Becker touched upon various things happening in tennis right now. Talking about the developments in British tennis, Becker pointed out why not many great tennis players have come after Andy Murray.
“I could talk at length about why Britain doesn’t produce the greatest players. A lot of coaches pick their players because they have a nice forehand, but you can learn that. You can’t learn attitude. Look at Andy (Murray). He’s not the most talented but he’s got the heart of a lion.
“He’s dedicated, he’s got a mother who knows a lot about the sport, he’s got a talented brother. That’s a nice package. I wonder whether some of the junior players have the right attitude.” Becker said about the state of British tennis and possible issues in the foundation of the sport where the prestigious Wimbledon Championships take place.
“Novak the person is very different to the player” Boris Becker on his ex-student Novak Djokovic
Boris Becker began coaching Novak Djokovic from the 2014 season and coached him for 3 seasons, splitting up with the Serbian in December 2016. Becker approached Novak after the latter had lost his No. 1 rank to Rafael Nadal and lost 4 Grand Slam finals in the space of 18 months.
The pairing was a fruitful one, with Novak winning 6 Grand Slam titles and 14 ATP-1000 Masters titles during the 3 years which also included Djokovic’s 2016 French Open title that completed his career slam, something even Boris could not manage in his career.
“It’s important to learn to control your emotions and to not give up the fight until the last point is played. That’s what Roger (Federer) and Rafa (Nadal) have got. Novak (Djokovic) could write a book about that. I love Djokovic’s attitude. He’s like a street fighter. But when I started coaching him, I took the time to get to know the person away from the player.
“The person is very different to the player you see on the court. The player is mechanical, even cold. But he’s the opposite in private. He’s got the most endearing character you can find. I always found it intriguing how those two personalities can exist within one person,” said Boris about Djokovic and his fellow Big-3 members Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
With Novak Djokovic in the 4th round of the Wimbledon 2021, it won’t be a surprise who Boris will be cheering on for the title this year.