Wimbledon 2022: Cameron Norrie’s rise to the top of tennis ‘no fluke’, coach insists


Cameron Norrie should believe he can upset Novak Djokovic and reach the Wimbledon final according to coach James Trotman, who has seen him develop from a green teenager into one of the world’s best players.

Trotman was the coach who worked with Norrie after he made the decision a decade ago to switch allegiance to Great Britain, moving more than 10,000 miles from his home in Auckland, New Zealand to London.

Norrie opted to continue his peripatetic tennis journey by moving to the US and studying at Texas Christian University but has kept Trotman as part of his team throughout.

“It was a massive change for him, leaving home, it was a huge decision,” said Trotman.

“Honestly, if you could see that 17-year-old now compared to the person you talk to and the clarity he has on who he is and what he wants to become and how he’s going to go about it, it’s phenomenal.

“I’ve been around a lot of very good players. Just watching Cam’s pre-season training for the last four, five years, the work he puts through his body of him, how much he’s pushing himself, there would n’t be too many players that are doing a similar kind of job. It’s pretty incredible.”

Norrie was a top-10 junior but had not been widely marked out as a player headed for the same level of the senior game prior to last year’s phenomenal progress, which saw him reach six ATP Tour finals and win the big tournament in Indian Wells.

Backing that up this season was his next challenge and one he has risen to with aplomb, winning two more titles and cracking the top 10 for the first time.

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Trotman said: “It’s easy to say now that you always saw some talent in him. I saw ability and I definitely thought there was a player there that could live on the world stage.

I saw ability and I definitely thought there was a player there that could live on the world stage.

james trotman

“I think the achievements he’s made have been phenomenal and he’s somebody that keeps surprising a lot of people because the traits that he shows, the mindset, his desire, his belief, his work ethic, his physical ability, he has an incredibly awkward game .

“There’s things that maybe don’t jump out at a lot of people unless you’re around him and you’re watching closely, but I think it’s pretty evident now with what he’s doing last year and through this year that it was no fluke to win Indian Wells, to get himself in the world’s top 10 and to find himself here in the semis of a grand slam.”

To reach a first grand slam final, Norrie will have to achieve what no player has managed since 2017 and defeat Djokovic at Wimbledon.

“The first thing that Cam’s going to need to do is perform,” said Trotman. “His team have gone away, done their tactical work, they’re going to have a plan for sure and ways where they feel like they can probably try to get at Novak, which obviously over the years has been incredibly difficult, but, in a one-off match, he’s going to have the crowd behind him, he’s going to be as confident as he’s ever been. Why can’t I do it?”

Cameron Norrie is bidding to reach his first grand slam final (John Walton/PA)

(PA Wire)

Trotman has taken over as full-time coach of Britain’s best young hope, Jack Draper, and only now works with Norrie for a few weeks each year.

The British number one’s full-time coach is Argentinian Facundo Lugones, who was a team-mate at TCU and has been with him throughout his professional career.

“He came over for a little trial period with Cam,” said Trotman of Lugones. “He was a young, inexperienced coach and with one of our best players, it was, ‘Is this the right decision here for Facu to go on that journey’?

“It’s proved to be one of the best decisions we ever made along with Cam, who had the big say. He’s taken ownership of his tennis and his career from him and he truly believes that he can be the best player in the world, which is fantastic.


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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