Goran Ivanisevic gets very honest on Novak Djokovic split: Got tired of each other

Ivanisevic reveals major details about why his partnership with Djokovic came to an end.

by Dzevad Mesic
Goran Ivanisevic gets very honest on Novak Djokovic split: Got tired of each other
© Getty Images Sport - Sarah Reed

Goran Ivanisevic revealed he sensed around last year's US Open that his time with Novak Djokovic was coming to an end and listed saturation as the main reason that led to their split. 

After Djokovic announced that he was moving on from Ivanisevic after six years of partnership, many instantly started guessing what was the reason for such an abrupt decision. While some thought Djokovic's not-so-great start to the year was the reason, some suspected that the Serb's and Ivanisevic's relationship got rocky to the point where they just couldn't continue together. 

Exactly a week after their partnership ended, Ivanisevic broke his silence and spoke publicly for the first time about his split with Djokovic. And the interview was quite revealing as Ivanisevic admitted that he and Djokovic "got tired" of each other and they felt there was nothing they could do to help each other going forward.

"I read a lot... People have to write, but no one came close to guessing (why it happened). There is no real reason, the real reason is saturation," Djokovic told Sport Klub.

"These have been extremely difficult five years, people forget the corona and that at one point he was the world's number one villain due to not vaccinating. We were always in an intermediate step, some minister forbade it, madness with Australia... 

"There was saturation, fatigue of resources - even a car must be serviced regularly ... And he got tired of me, and I got tired of him. I couldn't help him anymore, but we did a great thing."

Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic
Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic © Getty Images Sport - Shaun Botterill

Ivanisevic on when he first sensed his partnership with Djokovic was coming to an end

Djokovic made a perfect start to the 2023 season, winning the Australian Open and French Open to improve to 23 Grand Slams and set a new all-time Slam record. At Wimbledon, Djokovic made the final and he appeared to be cruising toward his eighth title at The Championships. But then, Djokovic suffered a tight five-set loss to Carlos Alcaraz and his streak of 34 consecutive Wimbledon wins came to an end. 

When Djokovic returned to action, he won the Cincinnati Masters and the US Open. But Ivanisevic sensed that something just wasn't as it used to be anymore.

"A split did not happen in America, it has never 'happened'. If I'm going to be honest, I sensed during last year's US Open (that our time was coming to an end)," Ivanisevic revealed.

"Wimbledon was really hard for me as a coach, Alcaraz was better in the end and kudos to him, but one or two points (and the final could have gone Djokovic's way)... 

"America was incredible, winning Cincinnati and the US Open, and I already felt that the end was near. There was a question whether at the end of the year or sometime this year... 

"Maybe we should have done it last year, but after the US Open I had knee surgery, I was gone for six or seven weeks, I returned to Turin, but it was already that fatigue of resources, and communication..."

Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic
Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic © Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

Ivanisevic: I was ready to die for Djokovic

Following an Australian Open semifinal loss to Jannik Sinner and suffering his first loss at Melbourne Park since 2018, Djokovic took a break and didn't play any tournaments in February. But Djokovic's first post-Australian Open tournament didn't go as planned as the Serb got stunned by Luca Nardi in the Indian Wells Masters third round. 

In his interview with Sport Klub, Ivanisevic revealed that after that loss, he and the record 24-time Grand Slam champion sat down for a conversation, during which they spoke about laughed, spoke about serious topics and also reflected on everything that happened during their six-year partnership.

"We've been through good and bad, we've been through madness... It's not easy to be Novak Djokovic - everyone is looking for you, wants something, gives advice," Ivanisevic said.

"When the cameras go off, Novak is - a good man. He has a big heart, he wants to take everyone into it, and that is not so easy. I was always ready to die for him, ready to fight with the whole world, it was not easy in those moments (Australia 2022) to be his coach, they looked at us like lepers."

Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic
Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic © Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

In the interview, 2001 Wimbledon champion Ivanisevic said he will always be extremely grateful to Djokovic for giving him an opportunity to work with him. 

Also, Ivanisevic tipped Djokovic to bounce back out of his slump and soon start making outstanding results like he usually does.

Goran Ivanisevic Novak Djokovic