John McEnroe backed to be next Andy Murray coach

The American is tipped to replace Ivan Lendl

Darren Cahill has confirmed he is not in the running to be Andy Murray's new coach but believes John McEnroe would be a good option.

Cahill is a very highly-respected coach who guided Lleyton Hewitt to number one and worked with Andre Agassi in the final years of his career.

Since Agassi retired the Australian has coached players through adidas, including Murray, who is known to value his opinion highly.

Cahill helped bring Murray and Ivan Lendl together and would surely have been high on the Scot's list to replace Lendl if he was willing to commit to the role.

But, like many of the potential candidates, Cahill does not want to spend the time on the road that coaching Murray would require.

He told ESPN: "At the moment I'm really fortunate, I have a couple of young kids and I get to see them a little more than I would if I took on a full-time coaching role, which means a good 25 or 35 weeks on the road a year.

"I'm lucky I have a couple of great jobs with the adidas program and also with ESPN.

"If I was to take on any coaching role, forgetting it being Andy, then I would be fully committed to it and I would have to step away from those two jobs. If you're going to do the coaching job, I feel like you need to be 100 per cent committed."

Murray revealed prior to the French Open that he has decided who he would like to be his next coach, although no contracts have been offered and the name remains a secret.

Andy Murray looks on during a practice session at Roland Garros Andy Murray looks on during a practice session at Roland Garros  

Excitement around the potential for McEnroe to take the job rocketed earlier this month when the American great said he would consider doing it, although with all his media and other commitments it appears an unlikely scenario.

Cahill believes it could work, though, saying: "John McEnroe, on paper, would be a great choice. He's great to talk to.

"John's got a lot going on in his life, but I would certainly encourage those two to sit down if that was ever going to happen.

"Andy needs that little extra. He's the type of guy and the type of personality that needs inspiration every time he steps onto the practice court.

"For Andy to look to the side of the court and see someone who has travelled down the same path as the one he's travelling down, I think for him that makes a big difference.

"For me the most important thing is that Andy picks someone he feels can be with him for the rest of his career."

Murray begins his French Open campaign on Tuesday against Kazakh world number 53 Andrey Golubev.

Qualifier Heather Watson also plays her first-round match against Barbora Zahlavova Strycova but James Ward is out despite a very creditable performance in a four-set loss to 17th seed Tommy Robredo.

The tournament witnessed its first huge shock, with Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka losing to Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, but Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Maria Sharapova all made comfortable progress.

PA

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