Djokovic hires Becker as coach

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Belgrade, Serbia ( - Former world No. 1 Novak Djokovic surprised the tennis world on Wednesday by announcing the addition of fellow former top-ranked great Boris Becker to his coaching staff.

The currently world No. 2 Djokovic will have Becker with him when he embarks on a defense of his Australian Open title next month. The Serbian star has won the last three Aussie Open crowns.

Djokovic is a six-time Grand Slam champion, but hasn't captured a major title outside of Melbourne since 2011. Becker, like Djokovic, also captured six Slams when he starred on the ATP World Tour in the 1980s and '90s.

"I am really excited to have the opportunity to work with Boris," Djokovic said on his website. "He is a true legend, someone who has great tennis knowledge and his experience will help me win new trophies from the Grand Slams and other tournaments. Becker is a great person, too, and I am sure he will fit in our team in the best possible way.

"My goal for 2014 is to play my best tennis and to get in shape for the Grand Slams and Masters 1000. These tournaments have the most weight in our sport, and I want to prove my worth at them. The team is now strengthened and we hope for maximum results."

Meanwhile, coach Marian Vajda will enter his eighth season alongside Djokovic, but Becker will be the head man.

"Boris brings new fresh approach, and together with Vajda he will make a winning combination," Djokovic added.

The 26-year-old Djokovic captured his third straight and fourth overall Aussie title last season, but also lost in Grand Slam finals at the hands of Andy Murray at Wimbledon and current No. 1 Rafael Nadal at the U.S. Open. Murray is coached by Becker's former bitter rival Ivan Lendl.

Djokovic plans to have the 46-year-old Becker with him at the Aussie Open, Dubai, Miami, Monte Carlo, Rome, the French Open, Wimbledon, Cincinnati, the U.S. Open, Shanghai, Paris and London in 2014.