After an impressive season in which she ascended to the top 10 and qualified for the WTA Tour Finals in Singapore, American Madison Keys has given coach Thomas Högstedt the pink slip.
“Madison thinks he is an amazing tennis mind, helped her game a lot, but too big of a personality conflict off the court,” a source close to Team Keys tells Open Court.
We reached out to Högstedt for comment two days ago; no response so far.
We’re told Keys has already decided on a new coach, but an announcement has yet to be made.
Högstedt began coaching Keys, who has had a dizzying assortment of coaches in her short career, after beginning the season with Canadian Genie Bouchard and doing a commendable job of stabilizing things in the wake of Bouchard’s concussion situation in the fall of 2015.
By early April, though, Bouchard had re-ignited her collaboration with longtime mentor Nick Saviano, and Högstedt was out.
He bounced back quickly, joining Keys almost immediately and beginning work during the clay-court season. Canadian Jesse Levine, who had been working with Keys after her relationship with former player Lindsay Davenport and husband Jon Leach ended, was bounced at that point.
The good results came quickly – Keys reached the final of the big event in Rome, losing to Serena Williams. She reached the Rogers Cup final in Montreal, lost in the semi-finals at the Olympics and dropped a fourth-round decision to a resurgent Caroline Wozniacki at the US Open.
While reaching just the round of 16 at all four Grand Slam in 2016 might not have been quite to the level of her potential, the season was more consistent overall than any in her career. Keys reached a career-best No. 7 in the rankings on Oct. 10 and qualified for the year-end championships for the first time.
Keys went 1-2 in Singapore, and that was it for Högstedt.
Note to Bouchard: if you’re looking, he might be available.