By John Bagratuni and Kristina Puck, dpa
Berlin (dpa) – Former top 10 tennis player Julia Goerges of Germany on Wednesday announced she is ending her tennis career with immediate effect.
Goerges, 31, a Wimbledon semi-finalist in 2018, won seven career titles between 2010 and 2019.
Her highest ranking was number 9, and her last match at the recent French Open, a second-round loss to compatriot Laura Siegemund. She was last ranked 45 and only played in Rome and at the Paris grand slam during the coronavirus pandemic.
“Dear Tennis, I am writing to you, because I am ready to say ‘Goodbye,'” Goerges said on Instagram.
“You have given me so many different types of emotions throughout our journey and I am very thankful for everything you have shown and taught me. I learnt how to deal with the toughest losses but also enjoy the most amazing wins of my career, to fight back many times when I was struggling with you and through it all we never lost sight of our dreams.
“I always knew how I would feel when it is time to say goodbye to you, and that moment has arrived. I am ready to close the tennis chapter of my life and open a new one, which I am really excited about.”
“Thank you for everything you have given me. You will stay forever in my heart,” she said.
Goerges helped bring Germany back onto the women’s tennis map after the retirement of Steffi Graf and Anke Huber, together with three-time grand slam winner and former world number one Angelique Kerberer, former Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki and former top 10 player Andrea Petkovic.
Kerber congratulated Goerges on “a great career” and named it “something you can always be proud of.”
German Tennis Federation (DTB) president Ulrich Klaus praised her as “an outstanding representative of German tennis.”
“You could always feel how much passion she had … Julia always thrilled us with her tennis. We will miss her a lot on the tour and in the national team,” Klaus said in a DTB statement.
Goerges did not reveal her plans for the future, but Klaus said he hoped “she will stay in tennis in some capacity because she is a great role model for our youngsters.”