Retiring in 2012, Ivan Ljubicic had stayed around the tennis court for a couple of years before receiving an urgent call. The 17-time Major champion Roger Federer wanted to work with the Croat, settling everything for the beginning of 2016.
Roger lost the final in Doha to Milos Raonic and the semi-final at the Australian Open to Novak Djokovic at the start of the season. He changed his schedule to undergo knee surgery on February 3, missing the next two months.
Ljubicic had to wait until April to join Roger on the court again and that was hardly a problem for him, eager to get Federer back to the winning way and with a clear vision of how to accomplish that. The issues with the knee were more serious than they had previously thought, and Roger had to skip the rest of the season following the semi-final defeat at Wimbledon.
The Swiss dropped out from the top-10 for the first time in 15 years, starting all over at the Australian Open 2017. With enough time to prepare the right tactics, Ivan led Roger towards two Major crowns that year, conquering Melbourne after an epic victory over Rafael Nadal in five sets and adding the eighth Wimbledon to his tally!
Federer won 54 out of 59 matches that year, finishing second behind the Spaniard in the year-end ranking list and pushing hard in 2018, defending the crown in Melbourne for the 20th and so far the last Major title.
In February, Roger became the oldest world no.
1 in ATP history, producing magic from his backhand.
In the previous season, Federer did enough to stay in the top-3 behind Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic at 38, wasting a colossal chance of adding another Wimbledon trophy after squandering two match points in the final versus Djokovic.
After the Australian Open this January, Federer had to undergo knee surgeries in February and May, skipping the rest of the season and hoping for a fresh start in 2021. Ljubicic said they have been working on a comeback, hoping to repeat what they did in 2017.
Also, The Croat will not continue his coaching job once Federer retires, having other projects to work on, in different sport industries. Until that, he will give his 120% to Roger Federer, determined to lead the Swiss towards more success in the years to come.
"Roger Federer will be my last coaching job. After Roger, I will focus on my project, but at the moment, I'm committed to him; we are going on and there are no troubles," Ivan Ljubicic said.