’24 years is like 24 hours’: Roger Federer announces retirement

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Tennis legend Roger Federer, the first male player to win 20 Grand Slam titles, announced his decision to retire from the sport after the 2022 Laver Cup. Federer informed about his decision with a message on his Twitter account. Federer won his first Grand Slam in 2003 when he won the Wimbledon title. He has since won 6 titles at the Australian Open, 1 at the French Open, 8 at Wimbledon and 5 at the US Open. He has long suffered from a knee injury.

“The Laver Cup next week in London will be my last ATP event,” he said in a statement posted to his Twitter account.

The 41-year-old winner of 20 Grand Slam titles has been out of action since a quarter-final defeat at Wimbledon in 2021 before undergoing another knee surgery. Federer’s announcement follows the retirement of Serena Williams. Serena retired with the second most Grand Slam titles to her name in women’s play (23).

Federer is third in terms of total number of Grand Slam titles won behind his main rivals Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

Here is an excerpt from Federer’s statement on his retirement:

To my tennis family and beyond, of all the gifts tennis has given me over the years, the greatest, without a doubt, has been the people I’ve met along the way; my friends, my competitors and especially all the fans who keep this sport alive. Today I want to share some news with you all.

As many of you know, the past three years have presented me with challenges in the form of injuries and surgeries. I worked hard to get back to full competitive form. But I also know the capabilities and limitations of my body, and its message to me lately has been clear. I’m 41 years old. I have played over 1500 games in 24 years. Tennis has treated me more generously than I ever dreamed of and now I have to recognize when it’s time to end my competitive career.

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The Laver Cup next week will be my last ATP event. I will play more tennis in the future, of course, but not in Grand Slam tournaments or on the circuit. It’s a bittersweet decision because I will miss everything the tour has given me. But at the same time, there is so much to celebrate. I consider myself one of the luckiest people on earth. I was given a special talent to play tennis, and I did it at a level I never imagined, for far longer than I ever thought possible.

I would especially like to thank my amazing wife Mirka who lived every minute with me. She warmed me up before finals, watched countless games even though she was over 8 months pregnant. And I endured my clumsy side on the road with my team for over 20 years. I also want to thank my 4 wonderful children for supporting me, always eager to explore new places and make wonderful memories along the way.

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