Swiss tennis legend Roger Federer announced on Thursday that he will retire following next week’s Laver Cup due to his ongoing struggles with a knee injury.
“Next week’s Laver Cup in London will be my final ATP event,” he declared in a statement released on social media.
The 41-year-old former world No. 1 and 20-time Grand Slam champion has not competed since losing in the Wimbledon quarterfinals in 2021 and afterwards had his third knee surgery in 18 months.
The author reflected on his career on the road, calling it “an extraordinary trip” that spanned 24 years.
“While there are moments when it seems like a day has passed, there are other occasions when it seems like a lifetime has passed.”
For the past three years, Federer’s knee injury has prevented him from competing in all but three of the eleven Grand Slam tournaments held since the year 2020.
After losing in the third round of the US Open this month, his fellow tennis legend Serena Williams is almost certainly retiring.
Federer claimed that his body has signaled the end of his career.
In his letter, he said, “I’ve worked hard to return to full competitive shape.”
“I am aware of my physical abilities and limitations, and my body has been sending me a clear message as of late.
“As for my age, it’s 41. Over the course of 24 years, I have played more than 1500 matches.
“Tennis has been more kind to me than I could have imagined, but I also need to know when to call it quits as an active competitor.”
As one of the ‘luckiest’ people in history, he was honored with a lavish ceremony at Wimbledon for winning the tournament an unprecedented eight times.
Roger, where do we start? tweeted Wimbledon.
“Watching you grow into a true champion has been an honor.
All we can say now is thank you for the memories and happiness you’ve brought to so many people; we’ll miss seeing you in our courts so much.
Carlos Alcaraz, a teenager on the rise after winning the US Open on Sunday and becoming tennis’s youngest ever world No. 1, also paid tribute to him on Twitter with a broken heart emoji.
Alcaraz replied, “Thank you for everything you’ve done for our sport.”
And the Laver Cup team tournament in London will be his last chance to compete as a member of the “Big Four” players who have dominated tennis for the better part of the last two decades.
World No. 1 Rafael Nadal, who has won 22 Grand Slam singles titles, No. 2 Novak Djokovic, who has won 21 Grand Slam singles trophies, and No. 3 Andy Murray, who has won Wimbledon twice, will all be playing together for Team Europe.
Additionally, Federer acknowledged their contributions.
“I was fortunate enough to play so many amazing matches,” he remarked.
“Our fights were always fair, full of heart and intensity, and I made an effort to honor the tradition of the sport at all times.
“There are no words to express my gratitude. We challenged each other, and we reached new heights in tennis as a team.”
In July, Federer indicated he hoped to compete in one more Wimbledon. Even though he’s leaving with regrets, he says he’s had a life most people would envy.
Federer continued, “This is a bittersweet decision since I will miss everything the tour has given me.”
“Conversely, there is great cause for joy.
“My good fortune has put me in the company of some of the world’s luckiest people.
“I was born with an extraordinary gift for tennis, and I played at a level much beyond my wildest dreams for far longer than I ever dreamed possible.”