Though Jessica Pegula is not playing in any WTA tournaments this week, she made headlines on Monday by splitting with her longtime coach David Witt. The two worked together for the past five years during which Pegula achieved many of her career successes including climbing into the World Top 5 rankings.
Pegula has not publicly spoken about her decision so we are trying to piece together what we know about this move, and here are three things we have learned. First, Pegula has a neck injury and is at home instead of competing in the Middle Eastern swing of the WTA Tour where she has been very successful in recent years. She chose this time when recovering from the injury to publicize the change. However, there is reporting indicating that she made the decision after her early loss in the Australian Open.
Secondly, she is turning 30 at the end of this month, and it is an Olympic year so she is facing personal and career milestones in 2024. Pegula is strategizing for this important year and the remainder of her professional career. It is worth noting that we have heard nothing from Pegula on social media or anywhere for weeks which is very unusual.
David Witt was shocked by Jessica Pegula's decision
For those tennis fans who thought this could be a mutual parting of the ways or initiated by Witt, that is not the case. Witt was shocked by the news. Though Pegula has had a challenging year with illness, injury, and early exits, he has been by her side through it all beginning at the United Cup serving as the USA team coach.
Pegula will hopefully be back on the tour for the Sunshine Double in Indian Wells and Miami in March. It will be interesting to see who is in her box and on her team at that time given this shocking split with Witt. Furthermore, will Witt be coaching a new player by then? He has had a long tenure with both Venus Williams and Jessica Pegula. American Alycia Parks has emerged as a social media favorite for Witt to work with next.