Maria Sharapova has split with her longtime coach after losing in the first round of the BNP Paribas Open. The five-time grand slam winner parted ways with Sven Groeneveld after her shock exit from the WTA Indian Wells.
Sharapova worked with Groeneveld for four years and as media reports suggest, the decision was mutual.
She announced the mutual parting with Sven Groeneveld on Friday, two days after she was beaten in straight sets by Naomi Osaka of Japan in her return to Indian Wells after a three-year absence.
In a statement on her website, the five-time Grand Slam winner said, "After four successful and challenging years of collaboration together, I would like to thank Sven for his incredible loyalty, work ethic and most importantly the friendship that we have formed that will go beyond this working partnership," said Sharapova in a release.
"Although we have mutually agreed to part ways during this time, I have been incredibly fortunate to have a team leader like him in my corner for the past four years."
Sharapova is ranked 41st in the world since returning to the tour last year after a 15-month doping ban. For the former world number one, a defeat to Osaka in straight sets was yet another painful reminder that she will have to start from scratch after her 15-month drug ban.
Groeneveld has worked with Monica Seles, Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, Mary Pierce, Ana Ivanovic and Caroline Wozniacki.
(With AP Inputs)