Former world No.1 Ana Ivanovic has announced her retirement from tennis at the age of 29.
The 2008 French Open champion made the announcement via her Facebook page, saying that due to injuries she feels she can no longer play at the elite level she demands from herself.
“I’ve decided to retire from professional tennis,” the 29-year-old Serb said.
“This has been a difficult decision but there has been so much to celebrate.
“By the time I had I was ranked No.1 in the world in 2008 I had seen highs I’s never dreamed of. I won 15 WTA titles and played three grand slam finals.
“But seeing those highs demands top physical form and it’s well-known that I have been hampered by injuries and I can only play on if I can perform to my own high standards and I can no longer do that, so it is time to move on.”
Ivanovic endured a tough year in 2016 as she battled injuries and some indifferent form that saw her finish her year after a first round exit at September’s US Open.
That US Open defeat followed a first round loss at Wimbledon and third round exits at her two favoured grand slams, the Australian and French Opens, as she finished the year with a world ranking of 63.
A long-time favourite of Australian fans Ivanovic made the Australian Open final in 2008 before going on to win her only grand slam title at the 2008 French Open.
Her Roland Garros success came when she beat Russian Dinara Safina 6-4 6-3 one year after being humbled by Belgian Justine Henin 6-1 6-2 in the final.
Her 2008 Australian Open run saw plenty of Australian fans adopt her as their own but ultimately she fell short, losing the final in straight sets 7-5 6-3 to Russia’s Maria Sharapova.
And while Ivanovic never quite reached the same heights at Melbourne Park, she did famously claim her only ever victory over Serena Williams at the venue.
In the 2014 tournament Ivanovic embarked on a breathtaking run that saw her come from a set down to beat Australia’s Sam Stosur 6-7 (10-8), 6-4 6-2 in the third round before doing the same to Williams.
Ivanovic roared back from a set down to shock the American 4-6 6-3 6-3 with a superb display of power-hitting, before she eventually fell to Canadian Eugenie Bouchard in the quarters.
Ivanovic also won the first of her 15 career titles in Australia when at 17 years of age she claimed her first tour title at the now defunct Canberra International, with a 7-5 6-1 victory over Austria’s Melinda Czink.
The decision to retire comes as a slight surprise as she was expected to make the trip to Auckland for the ASB Classic but Ivanovic obviously felt that she could not compete at the high level she demands of herself.