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Monday, July 6, 2009

Roddick's coach: Murray needs to change

Photo Titled Murray yells
Murray yells

Larry Stefanki, the coach who guided Andy Roddick to his first Grand Slam final since 2006, says Andy Murray needs to "change his mentality" and stop "playing defensive tennis" if he wants to win a Grand Slam.

Stefanki, who turned down the chance to coach Murray three years ago, said the British No.1 was the best mover in the game after Roger Federer who would win plenty of Grand Slams but he needed to be more offensive.

"I don't think Murray transitions to offence well enough. He is stuck playing defensive tennis only and, in my opinion, that was the big difference. I don't think Murray played enough offence [in his match against Roddick]," Stefanki said. "Murray's second serve was very attackable. That was the plan [for Roddick], to move in and club some second serve returns.

"You have have to some offensive threat. He has developed a big serve and can move the ball from A to B as well as anybody, he just does not know when to do it."

"Besides Roger Federer he is the best mover in the game. He has the best footwork and he is technically very sound. He has to change his mentality of the way he wants to play this game at the very top level.

"His record is great and he is very strong-minded, and I like that, but he needs to recognise when to play offence. I don't think he sees it while he is playing right now and that's the next step for him."

The coach said Murray's arsenal is well-equipped, but the next stage is in his head, getting his mindset around when to use his kit and how to mix it up. "I think he has plenty of weapons. He hits the ball as cleanly as anybody but you have to learn when to use them and unload on certain balls and I don't see him doing that," Stefanki told Radio Wimbledon.

"He is going to have a great future if he gets to the point of recognising balls to attack and to come into the forecourt and play there rather than 15 feet behind the baseline. He will win a lot of slams, he is that good a mover."

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