Wednesday, September 28, 2022
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JUST IN: Federer To Retire From Tennis This Month

Tennis legend Roger Federer will retire from top-level tennis after the Laver Cup in London later this month.

Swiss Federer, 41, has not played since Wimbledon 2021, after which he had a third knee operation.

“My body’s message to me lately has been clear,” the 20-time Grand Slam singles champion said.

“I have played more than 1,500 matches over 24 years. Now I must recognise when it is time to end my competitive career.”

He added: “To the game of tennis, I love you and will never leave you.”

Federer has struggled with a knee problem for the past three years that has restricted him to only three of the 11 Grand Slams staged since the start of 2020.

He has not played a competitive match since losing to Hubert Hurkacz in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon last summer.

He subsequently announced he needed more surgery on his knee having previously had two operations in 2020.

Only Spain’s Rafael Nadal, with 22 majors, and Serbia’s Novak Djokovic, with 21, have more men’s Grand Slam singles titles than Federer.

“This is a bittersweet decision because I will miss everything the tour has given me,” added Federer.

“But, at the same time, there is so much to celebrate. I consider myself one of the most fortunate people on Earth. I was given a special talent to play tennis and I did it at a level that I never imagined for much longer than I ever thought possible.”

As well as thanking his family, support team and fans, Federer also thanked his opponents from a golden era of the men’s game.

“I was lucky enough to play so many epic matches that I will never forget. We battled fairly, with passion and intensity, and I always tried my best to respect the history of the game.

“I feel extremely grateful. We pushed each other, and together we took tennis to new levels.”

Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro, who famously defeated Federer to win the 2009 US Open, paid fulsome tribute to his rival.

“I love you Roger,” he tweeted.

“Thank you for everything you’ve done in tennis and with myself. Tennis world will never be the same without you.”

Federer made his professional debut aged 16 in 1998 and won his first Grand Slam title at Wimbledon in 2003.

He ends his career with a record total of eight men’s singles victories at the All England Club.

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