Former world No. 5 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has signed up to play Lyon, the tournament has announced. Tsonga, 36. is set to make his fourth appearance on the clay courts of Lyon. The Lyon event held its inaugural edition in 2017 and the event couldn't have gone any better for the tournament organizers as home favorite Tsonga ended up winning the inaugural edition.
Back then, Tsonga handed a straight-set defeat to Tomas Berdych in the final to win the inaugural Lyon edition. Tsonga failed to defend his Lyon title the following year after losing to Nikoloz Basilashvili in the quarterfinal.
Tsonga returned to Lyon last year but didn't enjoy a strong campaign as he was beaten by Tommy Paul in the first round.
Tsonga to play in Lyon before he retires
Tsonga plans to retire at the French Open. Lyon takes place the week before the French Open and it will serve Tsonga as the final preparation for Roland Garros.
“It is with great emotion that I announce today my decision to stop my professional career at the next French Open,” Tsonga said on social media last week. “So many incredible moments, so much joy shared with a public that gave me a lot.
Hoping for one last thrill with you!” Tsonga, who has battled various injuries in recent years, feels it's time for him to put an end to his career. “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?’" Tsonga explained.
“My head tells me ‘but you can play all your life’ and at the same time your body reminds you that your abilities to surpass yourself are no longer there. “The ultimate reason is to tell myself that this is the last thrill.
In 2024, I won’t be playing anymore and for a few weeks now, I’ve decided that I’ll stop playing tennis at French Open”.