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Justine Leaves the Party For Good.

Posted by gauloises1 on January 26, 2011

Or so she says.

Justine Henin has retired from tennis for the second time, according to an announcement on her official website, after doctors advised her that she wouldn’t recover from the elbow injury she sustained during her match with Clijsters at Wimbledon last year.


In these recent months I have rarely been spared of the pain […] The doctors told me my elbow is too fragile and therefore I cannot continue my profession at this high level.

[…] I’m in shock, of course. Even with the work of these past seven months, I had to understand that there might be a reason for all this. After having considered and followed the advice of doctors, it is now clear and I accept that my career here finally ends.


It’s easy to poke fun at this, especially given the farrago of her first retirement, the short length of time before her unretirement, and the equally abrupt timing of this second retirement. It’s also easy to conclude that she’s giving up because her second career isn’t working out as well as she thought it would *cough*aswellasKim’s*cough*.

But Justine knows her own mind – albeit not in the sense that it necessarily stays the same for very long – and she’s clearly really struggled with this injury. Her body is not up to the daily grind of the tour any more, and she hasn’t made the transition to a more Serena/Kim paradigm where she can just show up and win. She’s also a great champion, and as far as I’m concerned she’s earned the right to retire whenever, wherever, and however many times she likes.

… I’m still going to give it eighteen months before I accept she’s really gone, though.

3 Responses to “Justine Leaves the Party For Good.”

  1. AmyLu said

    Can’t say I was shocked to read this (the timing, yes, but I wondered how much longer Justine was going to play after her loss), but it saddens me that this retirement may not be solely Justine’s decision. I think it’s always nice if an athlete can choose for one’s self when to retire, as opposed to an injury helping to make that decision.

  2. TennisFan said

    To me, she will always be the unrepentant hand, with the overly supportive coach (that will likely go on to create a new tennis villain).

    Like all, I’ve read she’s had a tough life, but at this point in her life you’d think she’d have become a complete adult.

  3. Bismarck said

    (apologies for this being not related to henin´s retirement)

    gauloises1, seer of tennistical things, let me ask your wisdom: will this be this year´s oz open?

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