I got super into tennis after I attended my first U.S. Open in 2021. As a former cheerleader and gymnast, I found the dedication, talent, and love of the game to be quite enduring. My favorite player in 2021 and today is Frances Tiafoe. Having seen him play, I love his determination to win and his ability to not give up when he doesn’t get the title. He reminded me of the Williams sisters and their love for the sport. You could tell he was honored to be given such a platform and was not willing to let it go. From Tiafoe, I started learning about other players like Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Rod Laver, and Roger Federer.
Federer — a famous Swiss player known for his airborne forehand and sweeping one-handed backhand — began his tennis career as a teenager and since then has won 20 Grand Slam single titles, 103 tour single titles, spent 310 weeks ranked as No.1, and won a record 6 victories in season-ending tour finals. Federer has recently announced his departure from the game. “I am 41 years old; I have played more than 1,500 matches over 24 years,” Federer shared on social media. “Tennis has treated me more generously than I ever would have dreamed, and now I must recognize when it is time to end my competitive career.”
To my tennis family and beyond,
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) September 15, 2022
His departure follows Serena Williams, the 40-year-old tennis player, who left the competitive world, keeping an eye on a comeback for a farewell run in this year’s U.S. Open.
Federer made his final appearance at the London-based Laver Cup, an annual team event he helped create to honor the late Rod Laver. “It’s a sad day for me personally and for sports around the world,” Nadal shared on Twitter in reference to Federer’s exit. “So many amazing moments on and off the court.”
Dear Roger,my friend and rival.
I wish this day would have never come. It’s a sad day for me personally and for sports around the world.
It’s been a pleasure but also an honor and privilege to share all these years with you, living so many amazing moments on and off the court 👇🏻
— Rafa Nadal (@RafaelNadal) September 15, 2022
For many, watching him play was like going to an art show. He had his eye on the ball, and very rarely broke contact with his opponent. He had speed and understood the court well, making the game look easy. “I’ve always felt he was Picasso with a tennis racket,” Paul Annacone, one of his former coaches, told The New York Times. “What I will miss most is the beauty he brought to the game.”
Sadly, due to the multitude of injuries, Federer has decided it’s best if he stops while he’s ahead. “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,” the pro shared in a press release.
Want to know the kind of talent it takes to make history? Here are 10 times Serena Williams proved she was the GOAT in women’s tennis.
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