“I don’t want to train anymore,” Mauresmo said. “I had to make a decision, which became evident in the last few months and weeks. When you grew older, it’s more difficult to stay at the top.”
“It’s a bit sad, but this is the right decision. I was lucky enough to have an exceptional career and to experience very strong feelings on the court.”
Mauresmo became the first French player, man or woman, to earn the No. 1 ranking which she held for 39 weeks in 2006. She won both Wimbledon and the Australian Open in that year along with Fed Cup for France in 2003, the WTA Tour championship in 2005 and the Olympic silver medal in Athens in 2004.
Mauresmo was one of a handful of all-court players left on the women’s tour and many felt that Mauresmo’s natural athletic game was hampered at times by a lack of belief. Her breakthrough Slam wins in 2006 at the age of 26 was inspiring to many as she achieved them in the later stages of her career. Mauresmo also endured her share of detractors and fans by being one of the few openly gay player on the tour.
“Amelie will go down in history as one of the best players of her generation and a terrific ambassador for women’s tennis,” WTA Tour chairman Stacey Allaster said. “Amelie is an extraordinary player, one of the nicest and friendliest personalities on Tour, and a true champion both in tennis and in life.”
Kim Clijsters also commented on the news saying, “Amélie was one of the most gifted players we had to play the sport. She had all the shots and it was only fitting she realized her dream and talent by winning Wimbledon. Away from the courts she was a super nice girl, always honest with a great sense of fun and humor. She is an icon in her home country of France and fans around the world loved her varied style of play. I will miss that and wish her all the best in life after tennis.”
When asked if there might be a chance she would return or if this was just a break from the game, Mauresmo said her decision was final adding “Even if I’ve learned to never say never. The players you are thinking about stopped earlier than me before coming back.”
What are your thoughts on Amelie saying goodbye?