Tennis fans will get one final chance to farewell Sam Stosur at Melbourne Park after the 38-year-old announced she will retire after this month’s Australian Open.
Stosur will compete in the women’s doubles competition alongside France’s Alize Cornet and fellow Australian Matt Ebden in the mixed doubles competition. She retired from singles last year at the Australian Open but continued to play doubles throughout the year.
Stosur took to Instagram on Saturday night to share the news, writing that it was “mixed emotions” as she ends her career in front of her Australian fans and at her “favourite slam”.
Watch Tennis Live with beIN SPORTS on Kayo. Live Coverage of ATP + WTA Tour Tournaments including Every Finals Match. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
“I’m so excited to be back at Melbourne Park playing in my 21st Australian Open, but it’s with mixed feelings that I also share with you that this will be my last tournament,” Stosur wrote.
“I feel so happy and grateful to have the opportunity to finish playing at my favourite slam – my home slam – in front of my Aussie fans, friends and family.
“Even though I’ve made the decision to retire from the sport I absolutely love, a small part of me would be happy to keep playing forever.
“I want to say a huge thank you to my incredible parents Dianne and Tony, my brothers Dominic and Daniel, my partner Liz and daughter Evie, and all the coaches, physios, trainers, doctors, and all my sponsors over the years. There are many others who have helped and supported me behind the scenes and around the world. You know who you are, I hope you know I couldn’t have done it without you, and I will thank you all in person.
“For now, I’m looking forward to getting on the court one last time in front of my amazing fans, who are the reason I go out there and play the sport I love, and enjoying this wonderful ride one last time.”
It brings an end to what has been an accomplished career for Stosur, who was ranked as high as world No.4 in singles and world No.1 in doubles.
She opened up on her reasons for calling it quits in an interview on Sunday, describing how it’s been difficult for her to pull the pin on her tennis career.
“It’s been very, very hard. I think when you do something for this long and something for this long and something you absolutely love, it is hard to step away no matter,” Stosur told Channel 9.
“But I do feel like the time is right. I’ve been doing this for a long time.
“There’s a few aches and pains. There’s a few days that you are like ‘do I want to pack my bags again and get on another plane’ and all of that,” Stosur continued.
“I still love going to tennis. I still love practising. I’m sure I’ll be back down at the NTC in a month’s time having a hit with one of the girls. It feels right. It’s been a great journey. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.
“I’m looking forward to spending more time with my friends and being able to see my family more. All the things that you can’t do when you’re on the road.”
The Australian’s crowning moment came at the 2011 US Open final when she defeated Serena Williams to claim what would be one of eight Grand Slam titles.
“I guess the U.S. Open final, the way I played and everything, is the absolute pinnacle of where you want to get to,” Stosur said back in 2012.
Originally published as ‘Mixed emotions’ as Australian tennis legend Sam Stosur announces retirement