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TENNIS

Sweden’s Thomas Johansson hangs up his racket

Swedish tennis star Thomas Johansson, the 2002 champion of the Australian Open, announced his retirement on Friday at the age of 34.

Sweden's Thomas Johansson hangs up his racket

“After a lot of thought, I’ve decided to end my professional tennis career effective immediately,” said Johansson, a former world number seven.

“Last autumn, I underwent yet another operation for a foot injury and, one month ago, I became a father for the second time.”

Apart from the Australian Open where he beat Marat Safin in the final, Johansson won seven other ATP titles and was doubles silver medalist with Simon Aspelin at last year Beijing Olympics.

“I have many great memories. My first ATP World Tour title in Copenhagen in 1997 as well as the victories at the Stockholm Open in 2000 and 2004 are amongst the best.

“Despite being unlucky with injuries during my career, which were very tough and frustrating for me, I’m very pleased that I was able to fight my way back into the Top 10 on two occasions, reaching a career high of seventh.”

Johansson, who started playing tennis at the age of five, amassed a 357-296 tour-level singles record and a 76-98 doubles record as a professional player.

His last tour-level matches came for Sweden in its Davis Cup World Group first-round tie against Israel in March.

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SPORT

Björn Borg’s son Leo set to make his Wimbledon debut

Four decades after Swedish tennis legend Björn Borg won a fifth consecutive Wimbledon title, his 16-year-old son Leo Borg is reportedly set to make his debut at the tournament.

Björn Borg's son Leo set to make his Wimbledon debut
Leo Borg's Wimbledon debut is yet to be officially confirmed. Photo: Hanna Franzén/TT

According to reports in British tabloid The Sun and Swedish tabloid Expressen, Borg will be awarded a wildcard to play in the Wimbledon junior event.

“Leo is very grateful about getting a wildcard for the qualifiers to junior Wimbledon,” Björn Borg told Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet.

“It will be an incredible experience and useful practice for the future,” he added.

A spokeswoman for the Wimbledon tournament did not want to confirm the decision, only saying that wildcard announcements and the main draw for the Juniors tournament would be made next week.

If confirmed, Leo Borg’s Wimbledon debut comes 39 years after Björn Borg defeated American rival John McEnroe, winning him his fifth consecutive Wimbledon title.

The iconic match has been called one of the greatest matches of all time and the story was adapted for the screen in the 2017 feature film Borg vs McEnroe, where Leo, bearing a striking resemblance to his fatther, played a younger version of Björn Borg.

During the 1970s and early 1980s Björn Borg won a total of 11 Grand Slam titles, five Wimbledons and six French Opens.


Björn Borg after winning his fifth consecutive Wimbledon title in 1980. Photo: Scanpix/TT

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