Djokovic ‘heartbroken’ by jailed friend Becker

MADRID (AP) — Novak Djokovic said he is “heartbroken” for his former coach Boris Becker after the tennis great was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison in Britain for illicitly transferring large amounts of money and concealing assets after he was declared bankrupt. .

The 54-year-old Becker coached Djokovic for three years beginning in December 2013.

“(I’m) just heartbroken, I mean, for him,” Djokovic said Sunday in Spain before the Madrid Open. “He is a friend, a long time friend, a coach for three, four years, someone who I consider close in my life and has contributed a lot to my success in my career.”

Becker was sentenced on Friday following his April 8 conviction on four counts under Britain’s Insolvency Act. The three-time Wimbledon champion was found to have transferred hundreds of thousands of pounds (dollars) after his bankruptcy in June 2017 from his trading account to other accounts.

Djokovic, a 20-time Grand Slam winner, said he would not comment on the details of Becker’s court case.

“I just hope that he gets through this period where he has to be in jail and when he gets out, you know, he can live his life like, I don’t know if we’re going to use the word ‘normal.'” ,’ because life is definitely changing,” Djokovic said. “I just pray for him. I hope things are okay in terms of his health, his mental health, because that’s going to be the most challenging part.”

Djokovic looks to return to full form in Madrid ahead of the French Open later this month.

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More AP tennis: https://apnews.com/hub/tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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