A tearful Roger Federer waved goodbye to professional tennis after teaming up with fellow great Rafael Nadal on an emotional night at the Laver Cup.
The 41-year-old received a long ovation after walking off court for the final time before retiring as a professional.
The Swiss, who won 20 Grand Slam singles titles, is considered one of the best players in tennis history.
“It’s been a wonderful day. I’m happy, not sad. It feels great to be here. I’m happy I made it through,” he said.
Federer cried as he hugged Nadal and other players, then took acclaim from the 17,500 fans who chanted his name.
Federer and Spain’s Nadal – for so long rivals at the top of the men’s game – joined forces to play doubles against American pair Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe in the annual team event between Europe and the rest of the world.
Despite Federer not having played competitively for over a year, the pair pushed Sock and Tiafoe before losing 4-6 7-6 (7-2) 11-9 at the O2 Arena.
It brought the former world number one’s 25-year professional career to a close after his 1,750th competitive match across singles and doubles.
“It’s been the perfect journey. I’d do it all again,” said Federer as tried to hold back tears during his on-court speech.
More to follow.
|20 Grand Slam singles titles||310 weeks as world number one|
|103 ATP titles||28 Masters 1,000 titles|
|6 ATP Finals victories||31 Grand Slam finals|
|1 Davis Cup triumph||£114m career prize money|