Former No. 3 David Nalbandian has announced his retirement from tennis at age 31. Currently ranked No. 231, Nalbandian has not played since the Davis Cup quarterfinals in early April. Nalbandian said that his sore right shoulder would not allow him to continue playing.
“Today is a difficult day announcing my retirement the activity that gave me everything,” said Nalbandian. “The shoulder is not allowing me to train with the demands that the circuit requires.”
The native of Cordoba, Argentina hopes to continue to work in the sport.
“Over many years I developed many friends in the circuit, many fans and if I can do something [in tennis] I hope I can do it in many ways. In Argentina tennis has become a very popular sport.”
Nalbandian called playing Davis Cup his greatest passion. Argentina reached the final with him on the team in 2006, 2008, and 2011, but was unable to win the title. Nalbandian had a 39-11 combined singles and doubles record in Davis Cup.
“The images that make me tear up are the Davis Cup,” he said. “The affection of the people, the atmosphere that exists there doesn't exist anywhere else. Perhaps that is also a thorn, but that’s the way it is.”
The Argentine is considered one of the best players never to have won a Grand Slam singles title. He finished runner-up at Wimbledon in 2002 and reached the semifinals at the other three majors. Nalbandian's greatest victory came in 2005, when he rallied from two sets down to beat world No. 1 Roger Federer in the final of the season-ending Tennis Masters Cup. The 6-7 (4), 6-7 (11), 6-2, 6-1, 7-6 (3) win ended Federer's 35-match winning streak; the Swiss had also won 24 consecutive finals.
Nalbandian announces his retirement. Will play two exhos with Nadal later this year.— FueBuena (@FueBuena) October 1, 2013
Nalbandian: "El hombro no me respondió bien. Y así no puedo competir al nivel ATP. Es muy duro anunciar el retiro". pic.twitter.com/xXEJD4ZpvH— Fernando Grisolía (@FerGrisolia) October 1, 2013
Nalbandian says that his shoulder has not recovered and so he cannot compete at ATP level. "It's very hard to announce the retirement."— Alexandra Willis (@alex_willis) October 1, 2013
Never forget: Nalbandian at Queen's, kicks board & injures linesman, DQ'ed http://t.co/l1S5EAUsmr— Matt Cronin (@TennisReporters) October 1, 2013
Remembering Nalbandian in Madrid 2007: Beat Nadal, Djokovic, & Federer in succession for title. Had that talent.— Steve Tignor (@SteveTignor) October 1, 2013