Stosur to retire from singles after AO

Sam Stosur has announced she will retire from the singles circuit after the 2022 Australian Open, playing her final solo match in Melbourne as a wild-card into the first Grand Slam of the year.

The 2011 US Open champion broke the news on Wednesday that although the AO will be her last singles event, she intends to play doubles next year.

The 2022 AO will be her 20th main draw singles appearance at home, matching fellow home-grown great Lleyton Hewitt.

It will be Stosur’s 69th Grand Slam singles appearance, which is a record for an Australian player and the 6th most of any woman in history.

She won a total of 93 Grand Slam singles matches in her career, claiming the US Open 2011 title, memorably overpowering Serena Williams in the final, and was a finalist at Roland Garros in 2010.

That 6-2 6-3 demolition of Williams at Flushing Meadows was her finest performance, making her the first Australian winner in New York since Margaret Court in 1973.

The 37-year-old, who also reached the fourth round in Melbourne on two occasions, in 2006 and 2010, thanked tournament organisers: “I’m so excited and very grateful to play in my 20th AO in a couple of weeks’ time,” she wrote on Instagram.

“A huge thank you to @tennisaustralia for giving me this opportunity to finish my singles career at my home Grand Slam.”

Stosur played only 11 singles matches this season, including winning a round at the AO and competing in her fifth Olympic Games.

“It really means a lot to me to be able to finish in front of my family, friends and Aussie fans who have stuck by me through thick and thin,” Stosur added on social media.

“I’m sure it’s going to be a mix of emotions but I wouldn’t want it any other way as I always thought I’d finish playing in Australia. I do however plan to play the rest of the year in doubles but this will close the first chapter of my career.”

Stosur reached her career-high singles ranking of No 4 in 2011 and was inside the world’s top 10 for most of the period between 2010 and 2013, but is now the World No 382.

In doubles, Stosur has enjoyed great success while partnering other players, winning 4 Grand Slams in women’s doubles and 3 in mixed doubles.

Her most recent doubles crown came at Flushing Meadows earlier this year, partnering China’s Zhang Shuai.

Only world No.1 Ash Barty has surpassed her achievements among Australian women in the past four decades.

Although Stosur failed to make it past the AO qualifying in 2000 and 2001, she debuted at the event in 2002 and has since featured in every main draw.

Her retirement from singles is no surprise as, earlier this month, she hinted this could happen.

“Chances are it probably will be the last time,” Stosur said at the recent media call. “I’ve just done my first day back training today. I’m seeing how things go.

“I had a little run around in preparation and lead-up to a big summer hopefully. My knees are a bit sore, but I actually hit pretty well considering I’ve had two weeks off.”



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