Tennis icon Roger Federer has announced he is retiring from playing professionally after 24 years on tour.
The 41-year-old has won 20 grand slam titles, sitting behind only Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
The Swiss legend posted a video and statement on Twitter late Thursday night.
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“I know my body’s capacity and limits, and its message to me lately has been clear,” he said.
“I am 41 years old, I have played more than 1500 matches over 24 years. Tennis has treated me more generously than I ever would have dreamt, and now I must recognise when it is time to end my competitive career.
“The Laver Cup next week in London will be my final ATP event. I will play more tennis in the future, of course, but just not in grand slams or on the tour.
“This is a bittersweet decision, because I will miss everything the tour has given me. But at the same time, there is so much to celebrate.
“I would like to thank my competitors on the court. I was lucky enough to play so many epic matches that I will never forget.
“The last 24 years on tour have been an incredible adventure. While I sometimes feel like it went by in 24 hours, it has also been so deep and magical that it seems as if I have already lived a full lifetime.
“To the game of tennis – I love you, and will never leave you.”
Federer paid tribute to his wife Mirka and his four children, as well as his parents, Swiss tennis generally, and his “amazing team… who have always given me the best advice and have always been there for me”.
“Above all I must offer a special thankyou to my unbelievable fans,” he continued.
Federer wins first set against Sonego
“You will never know how much strength and belief you have given me. Without you, those successes would have felt lonely, rather than filled with joy and energy.”
Federer joined the professional tour in 1998 and won his first grand slam in 2003 at Wimbledon.
He won his first Australian Open the following year and would win the event six times, the last in 2018, which turned out to his final major victory.
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