Federer 'shocked', Djokovic 'hurt' by Murray retirement bombshell

Andy Murray breaks down during a press conference in Melbourne on January 11 ahead of the Australian Open tennis tournament. — AFP

Andy Murray breaks down during a press conference in Melbourne on January 11 ahead of the Australian Open tennis tournament. — AFP

The tennis community was left shocked and saddened by Murray's announcement on Friday that he would be retiring after Wimbledon, if not before, after 20 months attempting to fix a severely damaged hip.

It would be a sad day when Federer does finally retire from the sport. His outspoken criticism of biased media reports, relentless support of his female coach and unwavering backing of his female colleagues led Serena Williams to say, "I don't think there's a woman player - and there really shouldn't be a female athlete - that is not totally supportive of Andy Murray".

She then revealed a personal battle with postpartum depression before closing her season in disappointment and acrimony, with a loss to Naomi Osaka in a US Open final marred by a huge row with the chair umpire Carlos Ramos.

"I think especially as an athlete, you're even more aware of it".

At 37, Federer is in Australia attempting to win the title for the third consecutive year and for a seventh time overall. "I hope that he can play a good Australian Open and he can keep playing beyond that, really finish the way he wants to at Wimbledon". Again, look, I'm playing tomorrow.

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At a news conference, an emotional Murray, 31, said that next week's Australian Open could be his final tournament, owing to pain in his right hip, following surgery a year ago.

The two-time Grand Slam mixed doubles champion was accused of attacking one-time friend Randall Kaplan.

"But I know that tennis is not forever. We will all be cheering for you these next few months". "Some athletes have had that and have gone back to competing (but) the reason for having an operation like that is not to return to professional sports, you know, it's just for a better quality of life". "To me, he has been undervalued as a man, not as a tennis player".

Andy Murray has announced his retirement.

Djokovic posted a tribute on Instagram to a man he has known since they first faced each other as 13-year-olds in 2001, concluding: "Whatever happens, I will always cherish our wonderful matches over the years and be grateful for those experiences".

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"Realistically I don't think there is anywhere else to go to preserve his hip and get it better so he can continue to play".

"But I know that tennis is not forever". Goodluck at the Australian Open muzz, I'll be behind you. "Your voice for equality will inspire future generations", said former world No. 1 tennis player Billie Jean King.

Second-ranked Angelique Kerber has already indicated her priority for 2019 will be the French Open, the only Slam to elude the 30-year-old German in her career.

The world number one is on a five-match losing streak dating back to Cincinnati last August after struggling with a herniated disc in her back over the final months of the season. We've grown together playing junior events.

"I'm still feel a little behind but that will come with more matches - hopefully more in the main draw". "But you can't manage that", he said.

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