Novak Djokovic, Coach, Slovakia: Everything you always wanted to know about Marian Vajda (but never had time to find out)
Once a top 40 singles player, Marian Vajda has gone into the record books thanks to his incredibly successful coaching partnership with world No 1 Novak Djokovic. Here are answers to some common questions you may have about him
Who is Marian Vajda?
Marian Vajda, a former ATP tour professional player, was the long-time coach of men’s world No 1 Novak Djokovic. Vajda was born on March 24, 1965, which makes him 56 years old.
When did Vajda start coaching Novak Djokovic?
Vajda began coaching Djokovic from 2006. The pair worked together until 2017, at which point they parted ways. They reunited in 2018. Vajda won the award for best coach by the Olympic Committee of Serbia in both 2010 and 2011, and was named the ATP Coach of the Year in 2018.
Speaking after Djokovic’s win at Roland-Garros in June 2021, Vajda gave some insights into what he admires about Djokovic. “Everything. I am really pleased and admiring his approach always. He’s absolutely professional. He’s putting himself like more under pressure on practices. He wants to really improve over every element of his game. This is amazing. I really admire that, that he wants to be better and better. I remember as a player, I always wanted to be, as well, to develop my game, but I couldn’t. In some moment I had limits. Looks like Novak still see the game, his game, at the level that he can really go much farther, improve on serve, backhand, overall game, volleys. This makes me so happy as a coach. I really appreciate that approach to his practices, behind-the-scenes tennis. It allows him to be always the best at the Grand Slams.”
Is Vajda still the coach of Novak Djokovic?
No. On March 1, 2022, it was confirmed that Djokovic and Vajda had agreed to part ways after the 2021 ATP Finals.
“Marian has been by my side during the most important and memorable moments in my career. Together we have achieved some incredible things and I am very grateful for his friendship and dedication over the last 15 years,” Djokovic said. “While he might be leaving the professional team he will always be family and I can’t thank him enough for all he has done.”
Who is coaching Novak Djokovic now?
Former Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic, who has been part of his team since 2019, is now his lone coach. From December 2013 to 2016, Vajda had worked alongside German tennis legend Boris Becker to coach Djokovic.
In a recent exclusive interview with Tennis Majors, Vajda spoke about sharing coaching responsibilities with Ivanisevic. “As a team, we are sharing every moment: preparation for matches, analysis, but not only that, we share passion, private things with our families as well. Novak is an amazing guy because he always brings positive energy. It is a blessing really to be a part of this team. As for the Slams, Goran and I communicate on a daily basis – voicemails, messages etc. Day before the match, on the day of the match, every day. The coach who is present at the time is the one giving the final information to Novak – Goran now at Wimbledon, me at the French Open. It is only logical, because when you are there, you know everything that is happening around the tournament and in the tournament.”
Is Marian Vajda the most successful coach in tennis history?
Vajda is considered to be the most successful coach in the history of tennis in terms of Grand Slam singles titles won. He has coached Novak Djokovic through each of his 20 Grand Slam singles titles.
Is Marian Vajda coaching anyone now?
Yes. Soon after splitting up with Djokovic, Vajda returned to coaching with his fellow Slovak, Alex Molcan.
Was Marian Vajda a tennis player himself?
Yes. Vajda began playing tennis at the age of 10 and was a former Czechoslovakian National Junior Champion. Vajda played on the professional circuit from 1982 to 1994.
What was Marian Vajda’s highest ranking as a player?
Vajda’s highest ranking as a player was No 34 in singles (September 1987) and No 118 in doubles (April 1990). You can find his ranking history on his ATP profile page.
How much prize money did Vajda win in his career?
The Slovak’s career prize money is listed as $756,646 on his ATP tour profile page.
What was Vajda’s best performance at a Grand Slam event?
As a player, Vajda’s best performance at a Grand Slam was reaching the third round of the men’s singles event at Roland-Garros in 1991. He also reached the second round of the Australian Open (1991), Wimbledon (1989), and US Open (1985).
Which country is Marian Vajda from?
Vajda, who was born in Povazska, Czechoslovakia, is from Slovakia and resides in the city of Bratislava. Vajda has been a former captain of the Slovakia Davis Cup and Fed Cup teams. He was also the coach of Karol Kucera from 2001 to 2005.