Shahar Pe’er renewed her partnership with coach Pablo Giacopelli this week, beginning her preparations for 2013 with the aim of bouncing back after a disappointing two years.
Giacopelli and Pe’er first teamed-up in November 2008 and their work really began to bear fruit in 2010.
Pe’er went a career-best 47- 21 in what was the best year of her career to date, recording five victories over top-10 opponents and losing only twice to players ranked outside the world’s top-50.
However, the sides parted ways in July 2010 due to what was described as personal reasons, and Pe’er recently admitted the split was the root cause to the crisis she has endured in the past two years.
“In 2010, which was my best year, coach Pablo Giacopelli decided to leave,” Pe’er told Sport5. “I started to work with Harold Solomon which in hindsight was a mistake. He’s an excellent coach, but he told me that I had to change my tennis to beat the top girls. I take the responsibility for this mistake. My bread and butter is beating the girls ranked below me and once I changed my game that hurt me.”
Pe’er, currently ranked No. 74 in the world, went a career-worse 15-23 in 2012, the first time she has ended a year with a losing record and recently plummeted to her lowest ranking since May 2005.
Pe’er sat out the final two months of this season, revealing that she had been suffering from an injury in her left leg since January that never really healed.
However, with Giacopelli by her side once more, she will surely be confident of returning to top form next year.
“I am very happy to be back again working with Shahar,” was all Giacopelli agreed to say on Wednesday, but he was optimistic there is still plenty more to come from Pe’er when he spoke to The Jerusalem Post in September.
“In tennis the emotional stability of the player is the most important part of their repertoire,” said Giacopelli.
“Constant changes unfortunately affect this by creating instability that has a direct effect on the player’s confidence. I believe any player including Shahar will struggle to keep a top form when this element of constant change is present.
“Having said all of this I believe, though it will be much harder than last time, that she can still have a good run, if the right team comes around her, and reach the top echelons of the sport though it is very hard to predict at this time how far this would mean in ranking numbers.”