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Last Updated: Tuesday, 25 July 2006, 05:10 GMT 06:10 UK
Connors agrees to coach Roddick
Jimmy Connors and Andy Roddick in Los Angeles
Connors and Roddick announced the deal in Los Angeles
Former world number one Andy Roddick has hired fellow American Jimmy Connors as his new coach.

Roddick, 23, fired his previous coach Dean Goldfine in February and initially approached Connors about linking up after this year's French Open in May.

Connors, 53, who topped the rankings for three years from 1974-77, said: "I never thought I would coach a player.

"Andy has the passion and emotion. I don't have to instill that in him. My job is to make him the best he can be."

Connors added: "His record speaks for himself. It is not major surgery here.

It means a lot when someone who's won as much as Jimmy has says he has belief in you

Andy Roddick

"Andy does what he does well. I would like to try and give him a little bit of what made me what I was. He can suck that up like a sponge.

"It's not his game, it's the intangibles. He wants to be number one and will do anything that it takes."

Roddick reached his first final of the year at last week's Indianapolis Open, before losing in three sets to James Blake.

He admits he lost confidence during his barren run, saying: "I felt like I was going into matches hoping something good was going to happen instead of working hard and making good things happen.

"I reached out to Jimmy after the French Open and we talked at Wimbledon, then l lost (in the third round).

"We decided to give it a four-to-five day trial and it clicked. We both clicked. We worked hard."

Connors is working with Roddick at this week's Mercedes Benz Open in Los Angeles.

"It means a lot when someone who's won as much as Jimmy has says he has belief in you," added Roddick.

"I'm pretty excited that I get to pick his brain on a more regular basis."


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