To my tennis family and beyond, of all the gifts tennis has given me over the years, the greatest, without a doubt, are the people I’ve met along the way: my friends, my competitors, and most importantly, the fans who give the sport its life. .
Today I want to share some news with you. As many of you know, the past three years have presented me with challenges in the form of injuries and surgeries.
I’ve been working hard to get back to full competitive form. But I also know my body’s capabilities and limits, and the message to me has been clear lately.
I am 41 years old. I’ve played over 1,500 games in 24 years. Tennis has treated me more generously than I could have ever dreamed, and now I have to recognize when it’s time to end my competitive career.
The Laver Cup in London next week will be my last ATP event. I will of course play more tennis in the future, but just not in Grand Slams or on the tour.
This is a bittersweet decision as I will miss everything the tour gave me. But at the same time, there is so much to celebrate. I consider myself one of the happiest people on the planet. I got a special talent for tennis, and I did it at a level I could never have imagined, much longer than I ever thought possible.
I especially want to thank my wonderful wife Mirka, who lived every minute with me. She warmed me up for the finals, watched countless matches even while over 8 months pregnant, and endured my crazy side of the road with my team for over 20 years.
I also want to thank my four wonderful children for their support, always eager to discover new places and create wonderful memories along the way.
It’s a feeling I will cherish forever.
I also want to thank and acknowledge my loving parents and my dear sister, without whom nothing would be possible. A big thank you to all my former coaches who have always guided me in the right direction. you’ve been great. And to Swiss Tennis, who believed in me as a young player and gave me an ideal start.
I really want to thank and acknowledge my wonderful team, Ivan, Dani, Roland, and especially Seve and Pierre, who have given me the best advice and have always been there for me. Also Tony, for creatively managing my business for over 17 years.
You are all incredible and I have loved every minute with you.
I want to thank my loyal sponsors, who are really like partners to me; and the hard-working teams and tournaments on the ATP Tour, who consistently welcomed you all with kindness and hospitality.
I also want to thank my competitors on the field. I was lucky enough to play so many epic matches that I will never forget. We fought fair, with passion and intensity, and I have always done my best to respect the history of the game. I feel very grateful.
We pushed each other and together we took tennis to the next level. Above all, I have to say a special thank you to my incredible fans. You will never know how much strength and faith you have given me. The inspiring feeling of walking into packed stadiums and arenas has been one of the greatest thrills of my life. Without you, those successes would have felt lonely rather than filled with joy and energy.
The past 24 years on tour have been an incredible adventure. While it sometimes feels like it’s gone by in 24 hours, it’s also been so deep and magical that it’s like I’ve lived a whole life.
I have been immensely fortunate to play for you in over 40 different countries. I’ve laughed and cried, felt joy and pain, and most of all, I’ve felt incredibly alive.
During my travels I have met many wonderful people who will remain friends for life, who consistently took the time in their busy schedules to come and watch me play and cheer me on all over the world. Thank you.
When my love for tennis started, I was a bull kid in my hometown of Basel. I always looked at the players in amazement. They were like giants to me and I started to dream. My dreams made me work harder and started to believe in myself. Some success gave me confidence and I was on my way to the most amazing journey leading up to this day.
So I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart, to everyone around the world who helped make the dreams of a young Swiss ball kid come true.
Finally, to the tennis game: I love you and will never leave you.