Former world no. 5, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, will retire at the upcoming Roland Garros. The French veteran will say his farewell to tennis at the home Major, struggling with injuries in recent years and not wanting to push his body even further. Jo-Wilfried is currently ranked 220th, and he is aware that he can not make a comeback towards the top-20 or top-30, turning 37 in ten days. Supported by his family, Tsonga has decided to leave his beloved sport and start a new chapter of his life outside the court, already running a tennis Academy. Jo-Wilfried has scored 121 wins at Majors and the same at the Masters 1000 level, losing to Novak Djokovic in the 2008 Australian Open final and claiming two Masters 1000 crowns. Tsonga has won 18 ATP titles from 30 finals and two notable trophies for his country, the Davis Cup and the Hopman Cup.
Known as one of the most formidable opponents when his game is on, Tsonga has 45 top-10 victories under his belt and 16 triumphs over Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Jo-Wilfried experienced a terrible knee injury in Montpellier in February 2018, dropping out from the top-100 eight months later. Starting all over at the beginning of 2019, Tsonga reached the Brisbane semi-final and conquered Montpellier, the same event that ruined his career 12 months earlier. After Lyon and Roland Garros, Tsonga grabbed four wins on grass ahead of mediocre North American hard-court swing. After an early US Open loss, the Frenchman headed back to Europe and conquered Cassic Challenger and an ATP title in Metz, securing enough points to crack the top-40 and continue his progress. In front of the partisan crowd at Paris Masters, Jo-Wilfried advanced into the quarter-final to find himself in the top-30 for the first time since February 2018.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is set to retire this spring in Paris.
He finished the season in the selected group for the 11th time in the last 12 years and earned the Comeback player of the year award nomination. Still, more health issues were lying just around the corner, and Jo-Wilfried has been struggling with a back injury since the start of 2020. He experienced early losses in Doha and Melbourne and skipped the rest of the year. Eager to climb back, Tsonga entered eight tournaments in 2021 and earned only one victory ahead of another hiatus after Wimbledon. Jo-Wilfried has won two matches in 2022 at home in Montpellier and Marseille. He will chase more of those at his 15th Roland Garros, hoping to find the form for his career's last tournament and display his fighting spirit, as always before.
"It's been several years where every day there is at least one moment where I think, 'What am I doing? Why am I hurting myself like this? Is there still a reason for me to make all this effort?' My head tells me that I can play for my entire life. At the same time, my body reminds me that my abilities to surpass myself are no longer there. That's why I decided to retire at my home Major at Roland Garros. This will be my fifteenth Roland Garros, and this tournament represents everything I have done in my career. I hope that I will stay in shape in the next couple of weeks and be able to be who I have always been at this tournament. The goal is to be me, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the tennis player. I like to perform well; I have always wanted to play well and set high goals. This will be the opportunity to do it one last time. I decided that I had to stop at a moment that I chose and when I'm still able to compete," Jo-Wilfried Tsonga said.