Holger Rune - Wimbledon 2023

Holger Rune required immediate attitude adjustment, admits Boris Becker

Boris Becker said getting Holger Rune to adjust and improve his attitude has been a key step in helping to improve the youngster.

Rune appointed Becker his new head coach earlier this year and the talented Dane immediately saw an improvement in results.

They have now extended their relationship into the 2024 season and both are optimistic about developing his game even further.

However, first a change of attitude was needed, and with Rune known as one of the biggest brats in tennis, that will likely surprise no one.

Speaking on Eurosport Germany’s ‘Das Gelbe vom Ball’ podcast about becoming Rune’s coach, Becker said: “The start was very intense because Holger’s participation at the ATP Finals in Turin was on the line.

“To put it clearly, he had a very bad summer in which he was eliminated eight times in the first round and once in the second round at nine tournaments.

“With a set and a break down in the first round in Basel, everyone thought it would be another difficult one. But he showed fighting qualities and was keen to win.

“We discussed in the preparation why he had lost the matches. Was it because of his forehand or backhand or was it because of his attitude? If your attitude isn’t right, you don’t really need to play tennis.

“It got better from match to match – his attitude anyway, but also his style of play. He lost the semi-final in Basel outright. That wasn’t a good match either. Things were much better again in Paris.”

Rune was the defending champion in Paris but he was eliminated at the quarterfinal stage by an inspired Novak Djokovic, who he had beaten in the previous year’s final.

Djokovic described it as one of his toughest matches of the year and noted the impact Becker had already had on Rune’s game.

For Becker, who coached Djokovic for three years, it was an odd experience.

“The duel with Novak Djokovic was strange for me at the beginning,” Becker said. “Holger on the right, Novak on the left.

“But we hugged straight away and I said to him: ‘Schatzi – we both call each other Schatzi – I want to beat you today with everything I’ve got, but I have a lot of respect for you.’ And Novak said he didn’t expect anything else from me.”

Holger Rune one of the ‘next big three’

Holger Rune has turned heads with his talent ever since he started playing in the juniors and he is going to be incredibly tough to knock out of the top ten now he’s in there.

One person he has really impressed, though, is Novak Djokovic – and that is not always easy to do.

After player Rune at the ATP Finals, Djokovic had no hesitation in naming the Dane as one of the players who will dominate the sport moving forward.

“Carlos, Jannik and Holger are the big three,” he said. “The next big three, if you want to call them.

“They are going to carry this sport. I will hang on for as long as I feel like hanging on.

“As long as I’m able to win against them on the big stage. I’ll still keep going because why stop if you’re still winning the biggest titles.

“Once they start to kick my butt, then I will consider probably having a little break or maybe a permanent break from professional tennis.”

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Michael Graham, Editor, has been a professional sports journalist for his whole career and is especially passionate about tennis. He's been the Editor of for over 5 years and loves watching live tennis by visiting as many tournaments as possible. Michael specialises in writing in-depth features about the ATP & WTA tours.