In an abrupt announcement, 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer has announced that he will be retiring from the tennis tour and the upcoming Laver Cup will be his final ATP event as a professional tennis player.
Having dominated the sport of tennis for two decades, the Swiss maestro last played at Wimbledon in 2021. He retires with 8 Wimbledon titles, 6 Australian Open titles, 5 Wimbledon titles and 1 French Open title.
Troubled by knee injuries, the 41-year-old Federer has had to go under the knife thrice already in the last couple of years, making his comeback all the more difficult and perpetually in doubt.
Taking the hard call to part ways and bring such an illustrious career to an end, Federer, to many the GOAT of tennis, will be appearing for his swansong at the Laver Cup as a part of Team Europe, scheduled to take place in London from 23rd-25th September.
Joining him on Team Europe will be the remaining of the Big Four - Rafa Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray - a quartet who changed tennis as we know it.
In the message shared by Federer, he says, "As many of you know, the past three years have presented me with challenges in the form of injuries and surgeries. I've worked hard to return to full competitive form. But I also know my body's capacities and limits, and its message to me lately has been clear. I am 41 years old. I have played more than 1500 matches over 24 years. Tennis has treated me more generously than I ever would have dreamt, and now I must recognize when it is time to end my competitive career.
The Laver Cup next week in London will be my final ATP event. I will play more tennis in the future, of course, but just not in Grand Slams or on the tour.
This is 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 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."
With this announcement, Federer will be bringing the curtains down on a 24-year-old career.
While the whole of the tennis world is still reeling from Serena Williams 'evolving' away from tennis and playing her last month only a couple of weeks back at US Open, Roger Federer's announcement comes as a shock that will take a while to sink in.