Ajla Tomljanovic is the latest Australian tennis star flying solo at Wimbledon after splitting from coach David Taylor.
She accepts the timing could hardly be worse, but the emotionally drained 21-year-old believes it’s time for a change after 18 months with Taylor, who is now free to focus solely on his leading charge Samantha Stosur.
“In the past, he helped me a lot, just developing my game and to think about my patterns more in the match and to think more in general when things are not going well,” Tomljanovic said after drawing Czech Klara Koukalova in the opening round on Monday.
“That’s where he helped me. I’m still working on that. It’s nowhere near where it should be but at least I’ve got some idea of what I’m supposed to do out there.”
Taylor worked overtime juggling Stosur and Tomljanovic during the European claycourt swing.
But far from feeling two’s company, three’s a crowd, Tomljanovic insisted the split was amicable and “it had nothing to do with Sam” reuniting with her long-time former coach in April.
“I actually thought during the clay season I benefited from playing with Sam a lot,” Tomljanovic said.
“I actually thought my game was picking up. (Then) I had a couple of tough matches on the grass.
“Dave game me a year and a half of great knowledge and I think I got better tennis-wise.
“We finished on a good note but it is what it is. It’s tough timing with the slam coming up but I’m making the best of it.”
Like Nick Kyrgios, who recently parted from Todd Larkham, Tomljanovic will receive morale support from her father during Wimbledon before taking her time appointing a new coach.
For now, she just wants to clear her head and play some decent tennis after slipping to 80th in the rankings.
“I’ve been getting a little too emotional and been kind of taking it too seriously and wasn’t having enough fun out there,” Tomljanovic said.
“I’m just going to try to keep it simple and do what I love.”