Dutch star Kiki Bertens to retire from professional tennis this year
Dutch tennis player Kiki Bertens has announced that 2021 will be her farewell year on the professional circuit. "I have always demanded the maximum of myself, but the tank is quite empty", the 29-year old tennis star wrote on Instagram.
"The balance of the hard work I put in day in and day out and the satisfaction I get out of it at the end of the day is no longer there. Also, I am more than ready for the chapter that comes next after this," Bertens stated.
The Wateringen-born player announced she will be taking part in the Tokyo Olympics event set to kick off on July 24. Bertens, known for her heavy topspin forehand, will also be making an appearance at the grass court tournaments Eastbourne starting this week, followed by Wimbledon which begins June 28.
After that, she will decide whether to take part in other tournaments depending on her physical condition. "I will do everything I can to end my career in the best way possible", Bertens concluded.
Her decision to say goodbye to professional tennis was not entirely unexpected. The current world number twenty has hinted on a number of occasions that she did not intend to remain a professional for very long. In the autumn of 2020, Bertens underwent surgery of her Achilles tendon because of persistent complaints. She came back to the tour in March this year but largely failed to play on her old level, losing 5 out of her 7 comeback matches.
Bertens is regarded as one of the greatest Dutch tennis players of all time. She climbed to fourth place in the world rankings in May 2019 after winning the clay court tournament in Madrid, something no other Dutch woman has ever done before. Additionally, Bertens reached the semifinal of the French Open in 2016, marking one of her biggest career achievements. She was defeated by Serena Williams in straight sets.
To date, Bertens has won ten singles and ten doubles titles since becoming a professional in 2009. She has made it past the qualifying rounds of 33 Grand Slam singles tournaments, and 23 doubles tournaments.