Philippe Dehaes: « I want to bring something to Daria everyday”

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Philippe Dehaes has been under the spotlight this year with his incredible on-court speeches to Daria Kasatkina. He answers your questions for our TecniMag.

Question by "Daria Kasatkina Fans"‏: What's the one thing you like most about Dasha?

Philippe Dehaes: I would say her good attitude. She’s waking up every morning wanting to give her best. That’s really pleasant. Because it is not easy every day, the pressure is high, but she keeps her focus, and that’s great.

Question by "Marine"‏: Dasha has obviously learnt a lot from you, but what is something you’ve learnt from being her coach ?

Philippe Dehaes: I learn every day, I find out new parts of her personality all the time. I have learned a lot about the game as well, and changed my way of appreciating women’s tennis, because things are different at the highest level

She teaches me also not to rest on the success we had this year

Question by "spenouche": For you, what separate the best from the rest in tennis?

Philippe Dehaes: The culture of excellence. It’s very repetitive, actually. Training, even if you can vary it, is still training.
So the thing is to get to excellence all the time. And to me, a very good player will never be satisfied with their game even after a great performance, and will always try to reach even the impossible.

Question by "his_antoine": Is there a tip you commonly use to drive the negative thoughts away from your player’s mind and bring confidence?

Philippe Dehaes: Daria has a sense of humor, so when it’s possible I try to come in from an unexpected door. So sometimes to surprise her, I can talk about the weather, the Russian Wall, and I do that to bring her back to reality.

My goal is to deconcentrate her from her bad mood at this time. So humor is a great vector to me to bring this message, because it fits her and she likes it.

Question by "Nat alie": What do you think about coaching during matches?

I think that the main point of the game is that 2 players face each other, they need to find their own solutions by themselves.

I think we should allow the coaches to speak to their player when they bypasses, not all the time, but between the games for instance, you can share some information.

And stop the on court coaching. I’ll give you an example of the last final of Daria in Moscow. Her opponent Ons Jabeur doesn’t have a coach. Daria is calling me 2 or 3 times. So we are 2 against 1 on this. And we should wonder whether it is normal or not.

Question by "Avishkar Husrath": which was your favorite moment of 2018?

When she won the title in Moscow, at home, the match was bad, it was really complicated. She didn’t play well, she was overwhelmed by her emotions, but she finally makes it, and what happens at the end are incredible moments. It’s just a few seconds, but they give you a boost of energy to go for 2019.


Question by "Maarten vdMaazen"‏: What are your goals for 2019 ?

My personal objective is to try to bring her something every day.
She has a ranking objective.

I try to keep focused on the process because to me it is key.
If we are good on the process and on our work, results will come

She is very ambitious for 2019 and she is right to be. I am too.
But now she will have to improve her game to maintain her ranking
It’s not a lack of ambition to say that if she finishes 2019 Top10 or in the 10, it would have been a great year for her.