The Tennis champion is looking forward to her next chapter as she’s saying goodbye to her fans while announcing retirement as a professional athlete at the age of 32.
Maria Sharapova is retiring from professional tennis.
The five-time Grand Slam winner, 32, is calling it quits, announcing she’s “saying goodbye” to the sport in an essay for Vanity Fair published on Wednesday, February 26, 2020.
“Tennis showed me the world — and it showed me what I was made of,” the 32-year-old added. “It’s how I tested myself and how I measured my growth.”
“And so in whatever I might choose for my next chapter, my next mountain, I’ll still be pushing. I’ll still be climbing. I’ll still be growing.”
Sharapova was a former number one player in the world, and notably won Wimbledon in 2004 when she was just 17 years old. She also won the U.S. Open in 2006, the Australian Open in 2008, and the French Open twice in 2012 and 2014.
However, the star faced backlash in 2016 when she tested positive for banned drug meldonium and was ultimately suspended from the game for 15 months.
Reflecting on the ups and downs of her career, she shared, “I realise that tennis has been my mountain.”
“My path has been filled with valleys and detours, but the views from its peak were incredible. After 28 years and five Grand Slam titles, though, I’m ready to scale another mountain – to compete on a different type of terrain.”
Now, however, she’s looking forward to taking a break and enjoying “a few simple things,” including, “A sense of stillness with my family. Lingering over a morning cup of coffee. Unexpected weekend getaways. Workouts of my choice (hello, dance class!).”
She added, “In giving my life to tennis, tennis gave me a life. I’ll miss it everyday (sic).”