Madrid | Muguruza announces full retirement

Spain’s former World No 1 Garbiñe Muguruza announced her retirement at a press conference in Madrid on Saturday, the 30-year old, who won both Wimbledon and the French Open, confirming that her extended break from the women’s tour a year ago is now permanent.

I have grown and matured in a very different way than what can be considered normal. Now I am ready to start a new chapter in my life, which will surely be linked in some way to tennis and sports. Garbiñe Muguruza

Muguruza, who was born in Caracas, Venezuela on 8 October, 1993, and raised in Spain, won the French Open in 2016 and Wimbledon in 2017, while she also reached the final of the Australian Open in 2020.

Last April she took a break from competition to spend more time with her family.

“I didn’t miss the discipline, and the difficulty of the life I had before. I have been realising that what I most want to look forward to is my next chapter, and not the tennis chapter,” she told the media.

Muguruza was ranked No 1 in 2017, and was still as high as No 3 by the end of 2021, when she won 3 WTA titles.

“I feel I am ready to retire, to open this new chapter in my life. A new era, a new life,” she said. “I was nervous, wanting to say it. I feel good, even if the word retired is a bit strong.”

She steps away as the second-most successful female Spanish singles player of all time, behind Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, who won 4 singles Grand Slams.

Muguruza defeated one of the Williams sisters for both of her Grand Slam titles, at the time becoming only the second tennis player born in the 1990s to win a Major.

She defeated Serena in the 2016 French Open as part of a run of 14 consecutive sets won, having lost to her in the previous year’s Wimbledon final.

She then defeated Venus at the 2017 Wimbledon , including a final set bagel, before spending 4 weeks at World No 1 later that year.

Muguruza has frequently described the Williams sisters as ‘role models’ for her career since she was growing up, not just in terms of the standards they set for women’s tennis, but for developing a style of play built on power and front-foot aggression that the Spaniard would make her own throughout her career.

The Spaniard reached at least the final in 3 of the 4 Grand Slams, losing out to American Sofia Kenin at the 2020 Australian Open.

Her best results at the US Open came in 2017 and 2021, but she only made the 4th-round on both occasions.

Garbine Muguruza won the Ladies Singles at Wimbledon, beating Venus Williams in the 2017 final

© Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

In 2021, she recorded a surprise title win at the WTA Tour Finals, entering as the 5th seed and coming out on top of a showcase of her powerful game.

“If, 25 years ago when I started hitting my first tennis balls, someone had told me that I would become a professional tennis player, that I would fulfil my dream of winning Roland Garros and Wimbledon, that I would become No1 in the world and win the WTA Finals … I would have thought this person was crazy,” Mugurza said.

“Tennis has given me a lot in this first part of my life. It has been a fantastic journey in which I have experienced unique situations.

“I have travelled all over the world and experienced many different cultures. I am tremendously grateful to all the people who have helped and accompanied me throughout this chapter, because without them I would not have been able to get here.”

Former World No 2 Conchita Martínez, who coached Muguruza to the Wimbledon title and WTA World No.1, described her as a complete player.

“Very aggressive from the baseline, but also her transition to the net was very good, too,” Martinez told “She played good on hard courts, but of course also on clay.

“Growing up in Spain, she also was very good at changing the pace and being able to also defend and construct the point from the baseline when she had the opportunity to go forward.

“She was a very confident player, amazing, attacking the serve from the opponent. When she was on and moving well, taking the ball early, she was very, very hard to beat.

“It has been an honour to work with Garbiñe, and a privilege to see her grow as an athlete who inspires so many people in our country and around the world.

“I feel very sentimental about our times together at Billie Jean King Cup, her rise to No 1 and her achievements at Wimbledon and the WTA Finals in Guadalajara. We’ve built a special bond, and I hope her future brings only good things.”

Muguruza’s last match took place at a WTA 250 event in Lyon, where the then World No 82 lost in straight sets to qualifier Linda Noskova of the Czech Republic, while her last Grand Slam appearance was a straight-sets defeat to Belgium’s Elise Mertens in the 1st-round of the 2023 Australian Open.

The two-time Grand Slam champion took an extended break from competition in April last year, to spend more time with her friends and family, and has not played since.

In October 2023, she said that ‘tennis has no place in my routine’.

“I still pay attention to my teammates, from time to time I can play, but not intensely, but more for fun. It doesn’t occupy my mind, my day or my routines.”

Last May, Muguruza became engaged to Arthur Blanco at the Marbella Club Hotel, with their oceanside wedding in Spain set for this summer.

“I have grown and matured in a very different way than what can be considered normal,” Muguruza said. “Now I am ready to start a new chapter in my life, which will surely be linked in some way to tennis and sports.”

Garbine Muguruza won the French Open in 2016, defeating Serena Williams at Roland Garros in the final

© Julian Finney/Getty Images



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