During his coaching experience, Riccardo Piatti had the opportunity to collaborate with some of the best tennis players on the ATP Tour. From Richard Gasquet and Milos Raonic to the fantastic Ivan Ljubicic: there are many players who have benefited from his advice and from his immense talent.
It is impossible not to mention the work done with a very young Novak Djokovic. "When we worked together, I always knew that he would become world number one and that he would come to be like Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
He had this determination and desire to become the best. And he worked very hard," Piatti repeated several times. T he 20-time Grand Slam champion was coached by the Italian in 2004 and in the first part of 2005.
Piatti on Novak Djokovic: "It was right to let go"
In an interview with the newspaper Il Corriere della Sera, Piatti explained the reasons that led him to end his collaboration with the Belgrade champion.
He said: "It was the spring of 2005. I was enjoying the successes of Ivan Ljubicic, with me since I was a child. I wanted to add some young players to my team to train. There's this kid, a friend told me. Number 250 of the world.
I had only seen him once. In Australia, where he had taken a memorable stretch from Marat Safin, 6-0 6-2, 6-1. This is to say that one should never judge quickly. We have been together for a year and a half. Then we separated, I couldn't follow him full time.
Regrets? Absolutely not. His father demanded of me absolute dedication. But I'm loyal to my kids. And I couldn't split myself. Plus there was a problem. Ljubicic is Croatian of Bosnian origin, Novak is Serbian. The war in the Balkans had just ended, and in those two countries certain things still weigh a lot.
It was right to let go. Winning a Grand Slam remains a dream, which I share today with Jannik Sinner. The search for the Holy Grail continues."