WTA number one Naomi Osaka has refuted claims that her shock split with coach Sascha Bajin was because of money.
Naomi had earlier announced on her twitter handle, a split with the German coach few days after her triumph in the Australia open final.
A decision which came as a shock to many especially considering the success they have enjoyed together, with Bajin guiding the Japanese to number one spot in the world from number 72.
Naomi spoke to WTA in Dubai to refute rumors flying that they parted ways because of money.
“Everyone thinks it was a money-related issue, but it wasn’t,” Osaka told the WTA.
“That’s one of the most hurtful things I’ve ever heard.
“I travel with everyone on my team, I see them more than my family. I would never do that to them.
“My reason is I wouldn’t put success over my happiness – that’s my main thing. I’m not going to sacrifice that just to keep a person around.”
Sascha Bajin won the WTA’s coach of the year in 2018 following his success with Osaka. Osaka revealed that they had long fallen apart since in Australia.
“It was kind of brewing in Australia. I think some people could see that if they saw how we interacted,” the 21-year-old added.
“I would not want to split on really bad terms. I’m not going to say anything bad about him because, of course, I’m really grateful for all the things he’s done.
“During the Australian Open, I was just trying to tell myself to get through it. I’m not sure, but I think you guys noticed.”
Osaka also expressed her willingness to get a new coach in place by March at Indian Wells.
“It’s not really ideal to go to Indian Wells without a coach. I don’t want someone that’s in the box saying negative stuff. That would be the worst,” she said.
“[I want] someone that’s kind of direct, not afraid to say things to my face. I’d rather someone say it directly to me than go around my back. That’s one of the biggest things.”