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Swiss tennis great Roger Federer has announced his retirement from competition, saying that at 41 his body was telling him the time was right. Over the past few years, Federer has had to deal with injuries and surgeries as well as a growing crop of new stars.
“I’ve played more than 1,500 games in 24 years,” Federer said said in a video message released on Thursday, after saying “the message his body has been sending me lately has been clear.”
His last ATP event will take place next week, at the Laver Cup in London.
Federer has won 20 Grand Slam singles titles, including eight at Wimbledon.
During his career, Federer won more than 100 titles in total and amassed a record of 1251-275, according to the ATP, which adds that he has never retired from a match, in singles or in double.
Federer, who started playing tennis at the age of 8, recalled his first exposure to professional tennis as a ball kid in his hometown of Basel, watching the players “with a sense of ‘wonder”. It made him dream of his own future in the game, he said – and it made him work hard to achieve those dreams.
“The last 24 years on tour have been an incredible adventure,” Federer said, describing the ups and downs of playing his sport in more than 40 countries.
“Finally, in tennis: I love you and I will never leave you.”