The Spanish coach talks about the end of his relationship with Chile, less than six months after starting to work together. He does not hide his grief at the situation and believes that his former manager must improve various aspects if he wants to consolidate his career.
Less than six months after assuming Pepe Vendrell (Castellón, August 21, 1980) ceased to coach Christian Garin. The Spaniard claims the end of the professional relationship went on good terms, although he admits the situation made him feel a little embarrassed. In this interview, he tells what happened.
Why didn’t you go to the US Open?
This phase is easy to explain. When Garin left Europe, we had some problems with our left hand and we had a lot of doubts about recovery, especially because we couldn’t train with our left hand; we couldn’t hit from the backhand. Physio Cristián Madariaga went there to start the rehabilitation process and see if we could improve it. We made progress, and we also had an agreement with Julio Peralta to accompany him. And since we couldn’t do the weeks he was originally supposed to do, which were Montreal and Cincinnati, we decided to use those prep weeks for the US Open. Things went well, Christian got better and started training. First with Madariaga then with the addition of Julio. I talked to him about the possibility of going there and he told me that he preferred to do the US Open with the team that had been above him in this last part of the recovery. And there I had the feeling that I had not just bet one hundred percent on the relationship, and it was consumed after the US Open with a calm and relaxed conversation, but in which I already perceived that I chose another path.
Do you think the arrival of Julio Peralta influenced the decision?
I understand not. Julio has now entered the project and I think those are two different things. I don’t think it has anything to do with it.
Did Garin ask Peralta?
No, I propose Peralta, seeking to build this structure a little for the whole year. For me, being in Europe and with Christian in South America or Miami, having someone like Julio, who could give us a hand, was essential. I thought it was convenient that it might be a good option and I told him so, and the truth is that Christian thought it was good. In the beginning, everything looked good until Christian’s decision… I think that in the end we did six months of work, where he came a long way; of a complicated situation… We put a lot of effort into creating a game identity, building professional habits on a daily basis, and this obviously has a wear and tear on the relationship, what you want or not in the end, The days and the weeks pass and everything becomes heavier and heavier. But I think it was an important moment for Christian and an opportunity for him to change this tendency that he had in his history, even if he did not feel perfect in the relationship, by being able to value what had been done, what could be done, and that in the balance the favorable would weigh more than an episode that must exist within a professional relationship, more with the demand that there is today in the circuit. Because in the end we don’t live in a comfortable world.
Is Garin one of the players who tend to blame external factors more than self-criticism?
Christian Garin is a person who lacked stability, it is an irrefutable fact. In the end, it’s something that is there, that has marked him in his history, and I think one of the things he needs to improve is to try to focus on what depends on him; by being less aware of what is happening outside of what you can control and by having more confidence. Because in the end that’s what it transmitted to him: an inner confidence in what you do and a little forgetfulness of external things. External things will sometimes go in your favor; sometimes against, but you have to have clear principles and above all be very sure of what you’re preparing, even if it’s a bit what you’re working on. And that’s the story… I have to tell you, I didn’t feel like the relationship was there to make that decision. Yes, it’s true that we had some wear and tear due to the intensity of the first months of work, but I think that if he had really believed in the project, it was time to close the group, to assess what ‘we had structured people around him and bet. In the end, it shows. When you are convinced it shows and I think it is transmitted on the track.
Do you think it’s bad for Garin to change so many coaches?
In the end, unfortunately, the stability has to overcome much more difficult times than the ones we have experienced at the moment, and that says a bit about the fragility of the teams that accompanied him. It really seems to me that we didn’t have enough tolerance to overcome I’m not going to tell you what difficult times, because the truth is that I don’t even consider that we had them… Everything was very fast, very rushed and we didn’t fight enough to give continuity to this project which had good ingredients.
Do you think the environment helped Garin in these circumstances?
I don’t think the environment is in question. The decisions that Christian makes belong to him. He is already 26 years old. I didn’t see anything strange in their surroundings. From family to friends, I saw nothing that could harm him. I think he has a habit of changing direction, and it’s a habit that inadvertently got into his way of being and that he has to try to control. Because I believe that what happened to us now will surely happen again more or less. He will get up and he must learn to reverse these situations, and that can only be done by joining the group, by associating, by uniting… And that’s a little bit what hurts me: it could not be attempted. Because I asked him to give continuity to the project and to look for formulas, if there was a little wear and tear, so that he could breathe a little… But unfortunately it couldn’t be.
Was the arrival of Peralta part of these formulas to maintain the relationship?
Obviously. It was one of the things I wish I could have done. I’m telling you, if it was about sharing the project more weeks with Julio, I wouldn’t mind either. Or even find someone else. In the end, what I want is to be useful to the player, to contribute and for the player to be convinced that he wants to be with me. It’s essential. If the player is not committed, it is very complicated.
Where did you imagine Garin if he had continued with you?
I can imagine him trying to solidify what we were building on his style of play. Ultimately, with what we tried, and I’m saying this because I’m also including Christian, he was the protagonist of the definition how he wanted to play; Primacy was given to the right, to make decisions, set rhythms, change speed, be powerful on the court… And sometimes we saw a player who dominated his opponents with a lot of speed, and that he he liked it and I think that’s what he needs to keep working on. What happens is that in the end, the results and the emergencies also get in the way and generate confusion and a little more stress than usual, but I think he has to focus on tennis, on its identity and on what if, little by little, things continue over time, I think that opportunities will arise.
How’s your mood?
I’m calm, really. I left everything. I have nothing to reproach myself. I’m still a little ashamed, because I really liked working for Christian, because of what he represents. I really liked the culture of tennis in Chile, I felt very comfortable… But in the end it is the decisions of the players that must be respected and I think he is also grateful for my work, for my dedication… I think that ending as we did, with good words, is what I like: closing stages and closing them with respect for others; With my thanks, I think it’s mutual. Although I would have liked, I’m not kidding, that Chris would have bet a little more at this time when the relationship was under strain, which are normal tensions in the demands of this world and the pressure that exists, and that you need knowing how to live with them without breaking up the work teams in such a direct way. Let’s try to find solutions. That’s what I told him; It is very difficult to find professionals with whom you have rubbed shoulders and, above all, it is very difficult to start from scratch and this generates a lot of wear and tear. Then, when you add a path, it’s true that there is another type of wear and tear, but you already have a path covered, and that’s what makes me regret this whole process.
What awaits you now?
It’s time to go back to square one and I will assess the options that may present themselves. If there are interesting things, study them and above all, if I get involved as I did in Christian’s project, let it be a project that excites me and motivates me, as was the case with him. We tried in the best possible way, there are things that will have contributed for the future and with that I stay. Now everything is very recent. You have to let everything return to normality a bit and see little by little what comes out of it.
follow on Jock
I’m Todderic Kirkman, a journalist and author for athletistic. I specialize in covering all news related to sports, ranging from basketball to football and everything in between. With over 10 years of experience in the industry, I have become an invaluable asset to my team. My ambition is to bring the most up-to-date information on sports topics around the world.