Cypriot tennis player Marcos Baghdatis seen here with our Michael Yiakoumi was defeated on Thursday by Italian Matteo Berrettini in a match for the second round of Wimbledon. This was Baghatis` last game in his career. The 34 year old tennis player said recently that he is planning to retire and that Wimbledon would be his last tournament. This was his 14th appearance at Wimbledon.

“This decision was not an easy one. It has proven tough for me, especially physically, to come back to where I feel like I belong.
Even though my mind wants to do it, the limits of my body have prevented me to maintain and play at a consistent high level as I expect from myself. Especially the last two years have been very difficult for me with recurring injuries and pain”, he announced on his website on June 24.

The match lasted one hour and 43 minutes and the final score was 3-0. ( 6-1, 7-4,  6-3).

Marcos won international fame in 2006 as he managed to be the runner-up at the Australian Open and a semifinalist at the Wimbledon Championships. He reached a career-high ATP singles ranking of world No. 8 in August 2006. Marcos owns a 21-13 record at the prestigious grass-court Grand Slam.

A quote from Marcos “The 4th of July, 2004, Greece won the European Championship in soccer, and that’s the impact that tournament gave me… that I can believe in myself and I can achieve anything. And I’m retiring on the 4th of July, 2019.

“I leave a legacy behind, the same legacy I got from the team of 2004 in Portugal, I leave this legacy behind to some kids in Cyprus or Greece” – Marcos Baghdatis, who retired from tennis after his second-round loss.

In an interview to the Wimbledon website, Marcos Baghdatis commented on how he dealt with Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic who played in the same era as his. The Cypriot said: “Of course, I do feel privileged.

If you see the last 15, 20 years, the winners of Grand Slams are not even 10 [different men]. That’s what was very hard. But for sure I do feel privileged to have been able to play with them, not once, not twice, many times.To compete against them and win against them”. Baghdatis also reflected on his decision to retire from professional tennis: “I think it’s about time for me. I feel that it’s been a good ride. It’s been hard the last two years on the body, trying to get back to where I believe my level is.­ And unfortunately, the body doesn’t allow that for me. This year I had great news that my wife [former WTA player Karolina Sprem] got pregnant and we’re expecting our third child. It made my decision a bit easier.

I’m so grateful to be able to finish my career here at Wimbledon. It’s an honour to be able to finish his career at this historic tournament. “There are many reasons. The timing is like this, it’s my wife’s favourite tournament, and the first ever match I saw on TV was [the final between] Andre Agassi against Goran Ivanisevic here in 1992.

I was seven years old. I had some great runs here, even though, yes, I didn’t reach the final as in the Australian Open, but my results here are much more consistent years through years. And it’s just the most historical place to play tennis, so I think I cannot be more grateful to be able to retire here.”

“I didn’t want to leave the court,” said Baghdatis. “It was a nice farewell. It felt amazing. Again, I want to thank everybody for staying and giving me that last emotion.

Roger Federer was full of praise for Marcos Baghdatis, who bid farewell to professional tennis at The Championships on Thursday in order to spend more time with his family.

Speaking after he reached the Wimbledon third round, Federer said, “I remember Marcos when I played him at the [2004] US Open in a night session match. He was still very young. He had super long hair. I think he took a set off me, too [Federer won 6-2, 6-7(4), 6-3, 6-1 in the second round]. You could see how good he could become because he had the speed, simple technique, forehand, backhand, which is always going to help you throughout the course of your career.

“He also had a winner’s mentality, liked the big stage. I think that’s also one of the reasons he did well here and also in Australia when the big matches came about. Off the court, he was always a lovely guy, always very funny, easy-going, good to be around with. So I liked him on the court, off the court.”

“I’m crying, but I’m happy. It’s a happy moment for everybody, because I’m really excited for the future and the only thing I’m sad leaving behind is the last part: the fans and the emotions that they always gave me.”


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