Former world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki has announced her shock retirement from tennis, taking to social media to share that the upcoming Australian Open will be her last professional tournament.
Wozniacki, 29, who is currently ranked 37, announced on Twitter and Instagram that she was retiring from the sport she’s played professionally for more than a decade to start a family with husband David Lee, who she married this year.
“I’ve always told myself, when the time comes, that there are things away from tennis that I want to do more, then it’s time to be done,” Wozniacki said.
“In recent months, I’ve realised that there is a lot more in life that I’d like to accomplish off the court. Getting married to David was one of those goals and starting a family with him while continuing to travel the world and helping raise awareness about rheumatoid arthritis (project upcoming) are all passions of mine moving forward.”
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I’ve played professionally since I was 15 years old. In that time I’ve experienced an amazing first chapter of my life. With 30 WTA singles titles, a world #1 ranking for 71 weeks, a WTA Finals victory, 3 Olympics, including carrying the flag for my native Denmark, and winning the 2018 Australian Open Grand slam championship, I’ve accomplished everything I could ever dream of on the court. I’ve always told myself, when the time comes, that there are things away from tennis that I want to do more, then it’s time to be done. In recent months, I’ve realized that there is a lot more in life that I’d like to accomplish off the court. Getting married to David was one of those goals and starting a family with him while continuing to travel the world and helping raise awareness about rheumatoid arthritis (project upcoming) are all passions of mine moving forward. So with that, today I am announcing that I will be retiring from professional tennis after the Australian Open in January. This has nothing to do with my health and this isn’t a goodbye, I look forward to sharing my exciting journey ahead with all of you! Finally, I want to thank with all my heart, the fans, my friends, my sponsors, my team, especially my father as my coach, my husband, and my family for decades of support! Without all of you I could have never have done this!
Lee, who is himself a former professional athlete, having played basketball for the Knicks, left a v. sweet comment on his wife’s Instagram announcement.
“Hall of Fame career!” he said.
“I couldn’t be more proud of you and so excited to see what the future brings! I love you wifey.”
Serena Williams shared her devastation in the form of emojis: three broken hearts, “yet” five unbroken ones. Her husband Alexis Ohanian – not a tennis player, sure, but he spends enough time in the stands – said he was “excited to see you [Wozniacki] be awesome at whatever comes next.”
Perhaps the cutest message possible comes from her brother, Patrik Wozniacki.
“What an amazing career you’ve had. I’m so proud of being your brother and your biggest fan and been able to follow your whole adventure from hitting against the wall in Køge Tennis Club till becoming a Grand Slam champion first as a junior winning Wimbledon and later on winning the Australian open in 2018. And not to forget 71 weeks as number 1 in the world. Love you Caro.”
Other tennis players and professional athletes have been sharing their well wishes to the retiring great.
I remember the first time we played each other for 3 and a half hours when we were 11, I can't believe how time has flyed, and how an amazing champion you've became. Congrats to you and your dad for this unbelievable career Caroline ???????????? ! All the best ???????? https://t.co/9Cda8zUPHZ pic.twitter.com/IPyks4JCE9
— Alize Cornet (@alizecornet) December 6, 2019
Catch you at the open, Caro.Image: Getty Images