Naomi Osaka abruptly announced she will no longer be working with coach Sascha Bajin, just two weeks after winning the Australian Open with Bajin in her corner.
Osaka began working with Bajin ahead of the 2018 season, and under his guidance won her first three titles – Indian Wells, the US Open and the Australian Open.
It was a string of results that helped catapult her to world No.1.
Yet on Tuesday morning (AEDT), the Japanese superstar broke the news on Twitter.
Thank you Naomi ???????? I wish you nothing but the best as well. What a ride that was. Thank you for letting me be part of this.
— sascha Bajin (@BigSascha) February 11, 2019
“Hey everyone, I will no longer be working together with Sascha. I thank him for his work and wish him all the best in the future,” she wrote, to which Bajin replied: “Thank you Naomi ???????? I wish you nothing but the best as well. What a ride that was. Thank you for letting me be part of this.”
According to Associated Press, “Osaka’s agent confirmed to (us) that Osaka would no longer be coached by Bajin but said there would be no further comment.”
The news is the latest in a spate of high-profile splits on the women’s tour, with reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber separating from Wim Fissette less than a year into their partnership and Roland Garros winner Simona Halep parting ways with long-time coach Darren Cahill at the end of 2018.
More recently, 2017 US Open champion Sloane Stephens announced that she and coach Kamau Murray were taking a break, before it was later revealed that Murray is now working with 2016 Olympic gold medallist Monica Puig.
The reigning women’s champs at the four Slams have all split with the coach they were with when they won.
That’s wild, y’all.
— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) February 11, 2019
Which split surprised you the most?
— Reem Abulleil (@ReemAbulleil) February 11, 2019
23 February 2019
Switzerland's Belinda Bencic will face second-seeded Petra Kvitova in Saturday's WTA Dubai... More
18 February 2019
The world's top two players, Naomi Osaka and Simona Halep, are both coachless after Halep ... More
16 February 2019
Simona Halep fought back from 4-1 down in the deciding set to beat Elina Svitolina 6-3 3-6... More