Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar has written a moving note for Swiss tennis champion Roger Federer after the latter announced his retirement from the professional sport on Thursday. Tendulkar’s note came after Rafael Nadal penned a heartfelt note for his ‘friend and rival.’
Tendulkar took to Instagram to write, “What a career, @rogerfederer. We fell in love with your brand of tennis. Slowly, your tennis became a habit. And habits never retire, they become a part of us.
“Thank you for all the wonderful memories.”
41-year-old Federer on Thursday had issued his long statement both in text and audio to announce his retirement at the end of this month’s Laver Cup in London.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion had written, “As many of you know, the past three years have presented me with challenges in the form of injuries and surgeries. I’ve worked hard to return to full competitive form. But I also know my body’s capacities and limits, and its message to me lately has been clear. I am 41 years old. I have played more than 1,500 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.”
Reacting to Federer’s announcement, Rafel Nadal wrote, ““We will have many more moments to share together in the future, there are still lots of things to do together, we know that. For now, I truly wish you all the happiness with your wife, Mirka, your kids, your family and enjoy what’s ahead of you. I’ll see you in London.”
Federer made his professional debut at the age of 16 in 1998 before winning his first Grand Slam in Wimbledon at the age of 23. He went on to win a record eight Wimbledon titles.
Tendulkar and Federer always enjoyed a good relationship. In 2018, both legends were engaged in a light-hearted Twitter conversation after the ICC declared the Swiss champion the best Test batsman.