One year after Andy Roddick, it was the turn of James Blake to say stop. In a highly anticipated press conference in New York, the American has confirmed what everyone feared; After fourteen years on the professional circuit, the former world No. 4 decides to put an end to his career.
New York. 11:45 am James Blake enters the room press conference, his eyes filled with tears. Soon, American confirms what everyone expects. After fourteen years on the ATP Tour, the former world No. 4 has indeed decided to stop his career. “The U.S. Open is my last tournament,” he has said without hiding his emotions. “I do not want injuries forced me to stop my career. I’m happy to do it when I decides. ” At age 33, the current global 100th could play his last match against Ivo Karlovic during the first round of the U.S. Open.
A Difficult Career
James Blake could never become a professional tennis player after learning he was suffering from severe scoliosis. But his dream to join the ATP was stronger than the pain. And his efforts have paid off as unable to take his first steps in business in 1999. Five years later, the drama will be enchainer yet. In Rome, during a workout, James Blake fractured cervical vertebra after bad fall on one of the goal posts. The summer of that year, a disease affecting hearing, eyesight and temporary paralysis of one side of the face just stop dead his career before his father died of cancer … back down to 210th place in the world, the ‘American fights to return to the highest level. Rightly so, since managed to climb to fourth in the world in 2006. His best ranking not to mention ten titles he won during the 14 professional years.
“I Loved Every Minute Of This Career, I Have Done My Best (…). I Have No Regrets “- J. Blake.
Despite the difficult moments of his professional and personal life, James Blake has no regrets about what happened. “Despite the tears I’m happy. Really (laughs), “he says at this special press conference. “I loved every minute of this career, I have done my best, I worked hard, I kept the right attitude. I have no regrets (…). ” So why stop now? The answer is clear. “I’m not as regular as before. Travel and being away from my family make me tired. I know this is the right time. My body does not recover as before, I have pain everywhere, knee and shoulder. I still had a good time this season, but it’s time to stop. “
A Respected Player
James Blake is not only a tennis player. Graduated from the Faculty of Harvard, the American has always wanted to help others, as he had done before his idol, Arthur Ashe. Creator of Thomas Blake Sr. Memorial Research Fund in memory of his father, the former world No. 4 has not failed to show support in the fight against homophobia. Initiatives that enable him to win the 2009 Humanitarian Award named one he admires. For his part, Ryan Harrison, a friend and admirer of James Blake, was full of praise regarding his compatriot. “There is no category. I have so much respect for him and everything he has done in his career. ” We will say, James Blake will miss out on the circuit.