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Last Updated: Sunday, 18 November 2007, 10:17 GMT
Gilbert to continue with LTA role
Brad Gilbert
American Brad Gilbert and the LTA will retain close links
American coach Brad Gilbert is to continue working for the Lawn Tennis Association despite his split from British number one Andy Murray.

The LTA, which had been paying Gilbert about 750,000 to coach Murray, has renegotiated the 46-year-old's deal.

He will now coach for 20 weeks in the next 12 months, starting with a December training camp in Florida.

He will then focus on trying to help Alex Bogdanovic, currently ranked 161 in the world, reach the top 100.

Roger Draper, chief executive of the LTA, told BBC Radio 5 Live's Sportsweek: "Brad's a world-class coach and clearly he wants to work with top players.

"We have reduced his contract down to a further year by knocking eight months off it. We've reduced the number of weeks he's going to be working in British tennis down to 20 from 40 weeks because he's not going to be travelling with Andy.

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"But we've set him a new challenge which is to get Alex Bogdanovic into the top 100, fulfilling his potential, and also to continue the great work he's been doing up-skilling our coaches and inspiring some of the next generation to follow in Andy's footsteps.

"About 15 or 16 of those weeks, he's going to be travelling around, working with Alex both here and at tournaments around the world. His first training camp is going to be in the first week of December."

Draper declined to confirm how much Gilbert would now be paid, saying: "We don't discuss salaries. We want to continue to have a positive relationship with Brad, he brings such a great amount of tennis knowledge to British tennis.

Alex Bogdanovic
Bogdanovic now has the chance to benefit from Gilbert's know-how

"We have reduced the financial burden in line with the number of weeks, [but] the compensation we have given him is actually freeing up his time. He also wanted to free up some of his time for [working in] the media."

Draper also explained how Gilbert and Murray had gone their separate ways.

"It was a question of two guys who stopped enjoying each other's company on the tour. People forget the ATP tour is a pretty strange environments to be in.

"When you're living out of a suitcase, living with people 24/7, it's quite difficult.

"From a tennis point of view, both guys are world-class - Brad's a world-class coach, Andy's a world-class talent - and I don't think it was anything to do with the tennis, I think it was more to do with what went on off the court," he said.

"It was always an interesting relationship - Brad is a pretty full-on guy. He did a great job working with Andre Agassi, but Agassi was a bit more mature and had already started winning Slams. Andy is obviously at the beginning of his professional career.

"I think there were signs of tension at the US Open and just before that, I don't think Andy's wrist injury helped when he was off the tour from the clay court season right through the grass court season."

Draper said the LTA's aim wanted to move British tennis forward, with Murray continuing to be successful and the next batch of players looking to make significant improvements in terms of their rankings.

But he added: "Even if Andy was to win Wimbledon next year or the year after we wouldn't have solved all the problems we have in British tennis."

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