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Pliskova kicks off season in Brisbane with another new team

Pliskova kicks off season in Brisbane with another new team

Alongside new coaches Daniel Vallverdu and Olga Savchuk, the No. 2-ranked Karolina Pliskova captured her first win of 2020 against Alja Tomljanovic.

Karolina Pliskova  is now being coached by Daniel Vallverdu and Olga Savchuk, having split from Conchita Martinez despite finishing the season at No. 2 in the rankings.

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Pliskova has had several other coaches during her career, including Jiri Vanek, David Kotyza, Tomas Krupa, and Rennae  Stubbs.

“I change coaches a lot so I think everybody's kind of scared right now,” Pliskova said with a laugh, speaking to press at the WTA event at Brisbane. “But, yeah, so I think this is the most difficult part. But it's not about, you know, I don't like the people anymore, but I just want to improve and do different stuff and I don't want to stay in one place. That's why I change.  

"But of course sometimes I have my own way, how I want to do stuff, but I try to listen because in the end, they are there to help me.”

Pliskova was coached by the recently-retired Savchuk during a few events in the second half of 2019, and increased her role when she stopped with Martinez. She then brought on Vallverdu as coach during the offseason.

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Vallverdu has worked with ATP players Andy Murray, Tomas Berdych, Grigor Dimitrov and Juan Martin del Potro, but has not coached on the WTA Tour before. Pliskova says she was "surprised" when Vallverdu took the position, but doesn't expect that he'll have to make big changes to the way he coaches.

"It's not different sport," she said.

Pliskova's priority is having a coach that creates a good atmosphere.

“I need to be positive and I'm, most of the time I'm not, actually. So this is what I need, because then if we are both negative, then there is no chance I do well,” the Czech said. “Yeah, just have some fun too and just, I get bored sometimes by playing the same exercises all the time, so I just need some variation, just to do little bit different stuff every day.”

On Thursday, Pliskova inched past Alja Tomljanovic 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-1. The Brisbane No. 2 seed will next face American Alison Riske, who she defeated twice last season.