Former World No. 5 Lucie Safarova has announced she will retire from tennis following the 2019 Australian Open after 16 years on the professional circuit.
Safarova revealed her decision to hang up the racquet following January’s Australian Open at a pre-final press conference in Prague for the Fed Cup final between the Czech Republic and USA.
“I had a great career but my health doesn’t allow me to continue,” the 31-year-old said.
Safarova hit a career-high ranking of No. 5 in 2015, the same season she made her one and only Grand Slam final at Roland Garros, but her career hit a significant roadblock after that year, and ultimately various illnesses and injury problems have forced her into a premature retirement.
If her ranking doesn’t allow her to gain direct entry into the 2019 Australian Open, Safarova hopes to receive a wildcard into the main draw. The Czech plans to play both singles and doubles in Melbourne before retiring.
Culled from Live Tennis