Wimbledon champ Bartoli retires

Marion Bartoli has announced her retirement from tennis at the age of 28 - less than six weeks after winning Wimbledon.

Staff Reporter
15 August 2013, 12:00am


The Frenchwoman made the announcement after losing 3-6 6-4 6-1 to Simona Halep in the second round of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.

Bartoli, who beat Sabine Lisicki in the final at the All England Club last month to claim her first grand slam title, said in quotes reported on wtatennis.com: "That was actually the last match of my career. Sorry.

"It's time for me to retire and call it a career. I feel it's time for me to walk away actually."

 

Bartoli blamed a succession of injuries for her decision to call it a day - citing in particular an Achilles problem which was troubling her on the hardcourts.

"My body just can't do it anymore," she said. "I've already been through a lot of injuries since the beginning of the year. I've been on the tour for so long, and I really pushed through and left it all during that Wimbledon.

"I really felt I gave all the energy I have left in my body. I made my dream a reality and it will stay with me forever, but now my body just can't cope with everything.

"I have pain everywhere after 45 minutes or an hour of play. I've been doing this for so long, and body-wise I just can't do it anymore."

Bartoli said she had played through the pain to realise her childhood dream of winning Wimbledon this summer.

She said: "When you dream about something for so long and you've been on tour for many, many, many years and you've been through ups and downs and highs and lows and already a lot of injuries since the beginning of the year, my body was really starting to fall apart, and I was able to keep it together, go through a lot of pain throughout Wimbledon, and still make it happen.

"That was probably the last little bit of something that was left inside me."

Asked what she plans to do next, she said: "There are so many things to do in life rather than playing tennis, so I'm sure I'll find something. I just need a bit of time to settle down.

"There is some excitement as a tennis player. There is a lot of excitement as a woman. There is a lot of excitement as a wife. There is a lot of excitement as a mother. There is a lot of excitement to come up.

"Obviously I'm excited to live my future, but I will have time to think about it in the months, years to come."

Bartoli was introduced to the sport by her father Walter, who remained as her coach for almost her entire career, giving up his job as a doctor to do so.

Noted for her individual style, she won the junior US Open title in 2001 and broke into the WTA top 100 two years later.

She won her first senior title in 2006 in Auckland and cracked the top 10 the following year.

In 2011 she reached the semi-finals of the French Open, but it was this summer - when she claimed the Wimbledon title without dropping a set - that she achieved her crowning glory.

She also achieved a record in doing so, winning her first grand slam title at the 47th attempt - surpassing the previous high of 45, set by Jana Novotna.

Marion Bartoli factfile

1984: October 2 - Born in Le Puy en Velay, France.

1990: Takes up tennis after being introduced to the sport by her father Walter. Trains at a local cramped court.

1999: Plays first events of career on the ITF Circuit in France.

2001: Wins US Open junior title, beating ninth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova 4-6 6-3 6-4. Afterwards her father gives up his job as a doctor to become her full-time coach.

May: After winning two Futures events, she receives a wild card for the French Open, where she loses to Catalina Castao in the first round.

2003: After breaking into the top 100, she enters the main draw of a grand slam - the Australian Open - by right for the first time.

2006: Wins the first senior title of her career at the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand, beating Vera Zvonareva in the final.

2007: Cracks the top 10 for the first time and makes her maiden grand slam final appearance, losing to Venus Williams at Wimbledon in straight sets.

2009: Records her best performance at the Australian Open, reaching the quarter-finals where she loses to seventh seed Vera Zvonareva.

2010: Breaks back into the top 10 after winning Eastbourne.

2011: Reaches the semi-finals of the French Open before losing to Italian Francesca Schiavone.

2013: Announces she is no longer being coached by her father. Amelie Mauresmo is eventually chosen as his successor.

July 6: Wins Wimbledon singles title, defeating a nervous Sabine Lisicki 6-1 6-4, and says: "I'm just so happy to be holding this trophy. It's been my dream since I was six years old."

August 14: Announces retirement from tennis after losing to Simona Halep in the second round of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.