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Sakkari, coach split after six years

Maria Sakkari Maria Sakkari - Getty Images

Maria Sakkari and her coach, Tom Hill, are splitting up after working together for six years that included two Grand Slam semifinal appearances and a career-best ranking of No. 3.

“Thank you for all the emotions, the support on and off the court, and the belief you had in me since day one. We grew together, and you helped me realize that everything is possible. Not only did you make me a better tennis player, but you also made me a better person,” Sakkari posted Thursday on social media. “Thank you for always wanting the best for me and for always having my back! Good luck on the next chapter in your career.”

Hill wrote that the pair is “ending our professional partnership but will continue to remain close friends.”

The news comes with Sakkari on a three-match losing streak and expected to drop out of the Top 10 in the WTA rankings on Monday. She was eliminated in the second round of the Australian Open by Elina Avanesyan last month, then lost her opening matches to Sorana Cirstea at the Abu Dhabi Open last week and to Linda Noskova at the Qatar Open on Tuesday.

The early exit at Melbourne Park marked the ninth consecutive Grand Slam tournament at which Sakkari lost in the fourth round or earlier — a stretch that came right after she reached the semifinals at the 2021 U.S. Open. Her other semifinal run at a major came earlier that season at the French Open.

Sakkari is a 28-year-old from Greece who climbed to No. 3 in March 2022. She was No. 9 this week.

“Working with Maria has been an absolute privilege and I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved together. We both believe this is a step forward in our respective paths, allowing us to explore new opportunities and exciting challenges that lie ahead,” Hill wrote on Thursday. “Thank you, Maria, for the amazing journey. I’m excited about what the future holds for you!”


AP tennis: