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Andy Murray Names Ivan Lendl Full-Time Coach, Novak Djokovic Wins in Abu Dhabi

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 22:  Andy Murray of Great Britain speaks during a press conference at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena on November 22, 2011 in London, England. Murray announced that he is pulling out of the tournament due to an injury.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Julian Finney/Getty Images
Devil in a New DressSenior Writer IDecember 31, 2011

Britain's World No. 4 player Andy Murray has finally ended his long search for a replacement coach by appointing eight-time Grand Slam title winner Ivan Lendl as his new full-time coach.

In a move that is sure to send shock waves through the sport, Murray has further signified his intent to win a first Grand Slam title that has so far eluded him with such a high profile appointment.

Speaking about his new coach, Murray said:

Ivan's impact on the game is unquestionable and he brings experience and knowledge that few others have, particularly in major tournaments.

This appointment seems like a match made in heaven because Lendl and Murray share the common trait of failing to win their first Grand Slam title after being in multiple finals. Like Murray, who has lost two Australian Open finals and a US Open final and is still searching for a first Slam title, Lendl lost his first four Grand Slam finals before going on to win multiple titles in all the slams bar Wimbledon, where he never won but made two finals.

Murray is scheduled to begin his 2012 season in Australia, at the Brisbane International next week where he is drawn to meet Kazakhstan's Mikhail Kukushkin in the first round.

Speaking on the challenge he faces in the tournament, Murray added:

It's a tough draw [and] you never know how guys can improve in the offseason. There are a lot of good players here and young players as well.

 

Elsewhere, Novak Djokovic defeated David Ferrer in straight sets 6-2, 6-1 to win the World Tennis Exhibition in Abu Dhabi, while Rafael Nadal defeated Roger Federer 6-1, 7-5 to claim the third-place spot.

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