Soderling finally retires after long-running illness

Published 12/24/2015, 6:56 AM EST
Robin Soderling backs Federer to win his 20th Grand Slam


LONDON (Reuters) – Sweden’s Robin Soderling, the player best-known for being the first man to beat Rafael Nadal at the French Open, has retired from professional tennis because of a long-running illness.

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The 31-year-old, twice a runner-up at Roland Garros, has not played an ATP World Tour event since 2011 due to mononucleosis, an energy-sapping viral illness.

“Thank you so much for all your kind words. So sad I won’t play professional tennis again, but reading all your msgs makes me feel a lot better,” Soderling said on his Twitter account.

Soderling spent 10 years on the Tour and rose to world number four.

In 2009 he ended Nadal’s domination in Paris with a stunning victory, only to lose to Roger Federer in the final — Federer’s only title at the claycourt grand slam.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)

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Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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