Dmitry Tursunov says he decided to stop training Emma Raducanu at the end of his trial period with the tennis star because of “red flags” he couldn’t ignore.
The Russian was working with the 19-year-old after parting ways with full-time coach Torben Black in April, but has since said the pair could not agree terms.
Tursunov is working with Olympic champion Belinda Bencic, but she says that was not the reason she left Raducanu.
“I was walking away from Emm, regardless of whether there was another one [player] available or not,” he told tennismajors.com in an interview published Wednesday.
“We did not agree on the terms and there were some red flags that could not be ignored. That’s why it’s a little frustrating to read stuff like this.
“I wasn’t going from one player to another, I wasn’t going to do that.”
Raducanu exploded in 2021, reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon before winning the US Open.
The then 18-year-old became the first seed in either men’s or women’s tennis to reach a Grand Slam final, let alone win one.
Injuries, poor form and changes in his coaching staff have led to disappointing results since then, and the teenager is ranked 76th in the world.
Earlier this month, he pulled out of the Transylvania Open with a wrist injury.
Despite struggling to establish herself on the WTA Tour, Tursunov was full of praise for her former player.
“First of all, he’s absolutely brilliant, he’s a hard worker and he doesn’t think or act like he’s a superstar,” he added.
“He is hungry to improve and is obsessed with tennis. I think it’s quite a rare combination. So I really enjoyed working with him, and I really wanted it to work. It was a very difficult decision for me to walk away from a player I like and respect.
“I think it’s a minimum one-year project, but I’d say it’s probably a two-and-a-half-year project to be safe.
“Of course, it’s hard to say that and it’s hard for people to understand how it’s possible because he already won the US Open. But, in my opinion, his game is very raw, and I think he can improve a lot in many ways.”
CNN has reached out to Raducanu’s team for comment, but has not heard back.