Friday, February 15, 2008

Officially... Goodbye, Monica

Monica Seles officially (finally) announced her retirement from tennis on Thursday, after having not played a tour match since 2003 due to her inability to fully recover from a serious foot injury that prevented a full-time return to the rigors of the WTA tour.

The future Hall of Famer's career included nine grand slam singles titles, 178 weeks at #1, and a brief period in which she threatened to replace Steffi Graf as the dominant force of their generation (a possibility that was unfortunately brought to an unceremonious end when she was stabbed on court by an obsessed Graf fan during a changeover in Hamburg in 1993). After more than two years out of the game, she returned to reach the '95 US Open final and win her final slam at the Australian Open the following January, but Seles was never again to resemble the nervy player who'd dominated the game just a few years before.

The great "what if" nature of Seles' post-1993 career led to the first "Backspin What If Special" in 2004, which I'll choose to look at as something of a Valentine to Seles... appropriate, since she retired on Valentine's Day.

Seles' career deserved a better, more celebrated end.

(Hopefully, the rumors of her participation in "Dancing with the Stars" are true, if only to be able to see such a great competitor "complete" one final time and Seles to be able to hear a few more cheers.)

All for now.


Post a Comment

<< Home