Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic, a former world number one and champion of the French Open 2008 has retired from tennis at the age of 29.
Ivanovic spent nine weeks as world number one in 2008 and won 15 career singles titles. She reached the French Open semi-final in 2015, and was runner-up at Roland Garros and Wimbledon in 2007 and at the 2008 Australian Open.
However, Ivanovic won just 15 matches in 2016 – the most recent in June. The Serb has been out with injury since August and dropped to 63 in world rankings after losing to the Czech national Denisa Allertova in the US Open first round, her final match on the WTA tour.
She announced her retirement from a video.
“I played so many memorable matches. But staying at those heights in any professional sport requires top physical form and it’s well-known that I have been hampered by injuries,” Ivanovic said. “I can only play if I perform up to my own high standards. I can no longer do that, so it’s time to move on.”
“There is no other way to say this. I have decided to retire from professional tennis. It was a difficult decision but there is so much to celebrate,” Ivanovic said. “Don’t be sad, be optimistic alongside me. My love and my greatest thank you to all of you.”
Ivanovic, who married Manchester United midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger earlier this year, was the first Serbian woman to win a grand slam.
She added in the video she will explore opportunities in business, beauty and fashion in retirement as well as with UNICEF, with whom she holds the position of National Ambassador for Serbia.