Cameron Norrie’s girlfriend has a “really good impact” on the British player, his coach has said.
Argentinian Facundo Lugones, who has been working with Norrie for almost seven years since his college days, said on Wednesday that the 26-year-old’s girlfriend Louise Jacobi has “made him mature a lot”.
The buzz around Britain’s Number One has reached fever pitch after his stunning quarter-final victory against Belgium’s David Goffin on No 1 Court on Tuesday evening.
Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, his coach revealed that the player likes “consistency”, keeping a close circle of people around him and playing backgammon for coffees with his fitness trainer, Vasek Jursik.
Mr Lugones said: “For him, it’s really important to have people around him that he can trust with anything and we’re going to push him and he believes in us and I think he’s happy with our team and that gives him a lot of love and consistency, that’s what he wants.”
Asked about Ms Jacobi, he said: “Kind of the same thing with his team – a lot of consistency, the same people around him, the same energy, same people you go to dinner (with) you hang out (with) and no distractions.
“And I think she has a really good impact on him, especially off the court, keeping things the same, keeping him happy, made him mature a lot, grow as a person and that shows in his career as well.”
Mr Lugones, who won Coach of the Year at the 2021 ATP Awards for his efforts in helping Norrie deliver the best year of his career so far, said they don’t clash much as he spoke about their relationship.
He said: “We have a great relationship – pretty much the same that when we started, very respectful of each other.
“Off the court we talk about anything. We’re friends, when we’re in tennis, really, really professional, very serious.
“Maybe we don’t spend that much time off the court now because he has his girlfriend, has his own place now, I stay somewhere else.
“Maybe we spend less time off the court, but the quality of the time and the way we do things is pretty much the same.”
Asked why he calls Norrie his “chicken”, Mr Lugones laughed, saying: “That was a long time ago. In Argentina when you’re taking care of someone, you call them your chicken, like you’re taking care of him.
“When I started travelling with him, all my friends would ask me, ‘How is your chicken doing? In Spanish. That’s why I call him that – that’s kind of the reason about that.
“He became a dog now. He’s not a chicken anymore.”
Mr Lugones also revealed that Norrie’s interests outside of tennis are playing card games, backgammon and Ludo and he plays with his fitness trainer.
“He plays a lot of games with his fitness trainer, Vasek – card games, plays backgammon, plays Ludo,” he said. “Plays always for coffees. They compete and they keep track of the coffees they owe to each other.
“He needs to stay competing all the time. He can’t unwind from competition.”
Mr Lugones said they play for coffees because Norrie always wins.
“He’s not going to make his fitness trainer go broke because he wins all the time,” he said.
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