Marco Panichi is one of the new faces in Novak Djokovic's team. The high-level Italian fitness trainer started working with the 12-time Grand Slam champion earlier this year and he will help him in 2018 trying to get back to his best fitness level. In an interview to Tennis Italiano, Panichi revealed how their association came to be. 'His management approached me during the Monte Carlo Masters where I was helping [Simone] Bolelli and [Alessandro] Gianessi,' he said. 'They wanted to understand what my situation was and if, from my side, there was an availability to start a journey together. At the same time, I didn't even know that Novak had split with his old team. Then we spoke about it again at Roland Garros and we have been working in Monte Carlo. Novak has been clear since the beginning: he wants exclusivity and a consistent commitment, as well as he does.'
Panichi, who has worked with Svetlana Kuznetsova and Fabio Fognini among others in the past, also had some great words for Djokovic as a person: 'He is an exceptional guy, with a higher than average intelligence. He wants always to be informed about why we are going to do a certain exercise, he wants to know and understand. He knows a lot about the human body.'
Is it possible to make him unbeatable again? 'It's a big bet. Novak is changing as a person too, and he is becoming an adult, which means that in his life there isn't only tennis anymore but also his family and children. It happens to everyone.'