They might not have Genie tonight, but theu will have Barbora vs. Jakub.
(UPDATE: The wife beat the student, 6-2, 6-2. So much for all that inside knowledge!)
Jakub Zahlava, a former top-200 player who has been married to Barbora Zahlavova Strycova since 2006, is smart enough not to coach his wife. Any more.Back when they were first married, he did. And that was fun. He also manages her. That’s plenty enough.
I mean, we’ve seen her on court. They’d probably have been divorced years ago.
But in Antwerp, working with the Schuttler-Waske Academy in Germany, Zahlava has been coaching Mona Barthel of Germany. (He also has coached Tatjana Malek, Michael Berrer and Louk Sorenson).
He was courtside for her big victory over Genie Bouchard Thursday night.
This is, to say the least, a massive upgrade for Barthel, who more often than not on the road hasn’t even had a coach traveling with her.
That has left, er, Mum.
God bless her, but for a player with Barthel’s talent, that’s just not going to cut it. At all.
The teeny, tiny little problem here is that Zahlava’s protégé is playing … Zahlava’s wife in the quarter-finals of Antwerp Friday night. Big match for both players.
This could be the thing.
If Zahlava and Strycova’s French coach, Jerome Adamac (charming fellow; good coach, too) are smart, they’ll just sit together for this shindig. Because together, they can be strong enough to deal with any drama that might occur.
Or, you never know, maybe we’re making a big deal out of nothing and BZS doesn’t care at all!
By the way, spectacularly handsome couple, those two.
(Zahlava pic from TennisTV; Lovely couple pic from the Brisbane International website)