Heartbreaking: Former World No. 2 Anett Kontaveit Announces Retirement At 27

Heartbreaking: Former World No. 2 Anett Kontaveit Announces Retirement At 27

by Zachary Wimer

27-year-old former World No. 2, Anett Kontaveit, announced that she's retiring from her professional tennis career.

In the heartrending world of professional sports, few stories hit as hard as a career cut short by injury. That is the tale of former World No. 2 from Estonia, who, in a poignant statement on June 20th, announced her retirement from professional tennis due to a medical condition.

Kontaveit competed on the WTA Tour since 2010 and reached a career-high 2nd place in the WTA Rankings. But then, her injury struggles started and the Estonian went from World No. 3 to out of the Top 50 in just four months.

Despite making it to the tennis court again in 2023, especially to help her country in the Billie Jean King Cup, Kontaveit now announced that the 2023 Wimbledon will be her last professional tennis tournament.

In a statement posted on social media, Kontaveit revealed that she has been battling lumbar disc degeneration, a painful condition that effectively hampers her ability to engage in full-scale training or competition.

"Today I am announcing that I am ending my career as a competitive athlete. After several doctor’s visits and consultations with my medical team, I have been advised that I have lumbar disc degeneration in my back."

Born and raised in the small Baltic nation of Estonia, Kontaveit has been nothing short of a national icon, her journey an inspiration for countless young Estonians who saw in her a vision of what could be achieved with hard work and determination.

As she carried her nation's flag onto tennis courts worldwide, Kontaveit instilled immense pride in the hearts of her fellow citizens, reaching out and capturing the global spotlight.

"This does not allow for full-scale training or continued competition. Therefore, it is impossible to continue at the top level in such a highly competitive field. Tennis has given and taught me a lot, and I am very grateful for that. It has been important for me to bring the Estonian flag to the tennis courts and to be able to play in front of my supporters and fans all over the world."

Her announcement, while somber, retains the same spirit of resilience and determination that defined her professional career. Kontaveit acknowledges the realities of her condition but also reflects on the lessons and experiences that tennis has given her. There is a certain grace and humility in her farewell that is characteristic of the champion that she is.

"I am ready for new challenges after my last effort as a professional tennis player – to enjoy the game and compete as hard as I can at Wimbledon. Thank you everyone for your continuous support."


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