South African cricket legend AB de Villiers thought Ashleigh Barty's decision to retire from tennis at the age of 25 was "weird" In late March, Barty shocked the tennis world when she announced she was stepping away from tennis at the age of 25.
Barty was in prime of her career and the most dominant players on the WTA Tour at the time of her retirement. In January, Barty won back-to-back titles at the Adelaide International and Australian Open. Barty started the 2022 season on a 11-0 record and many believed she would win more Grand Slams this year.
Instead, Barty retired while she was still ranked at No. 1 in the world. De Villiers, 38, who is considered as one of the greatest batsmen in cricket history, enjoyed a lengthy career as he retired in 2018. “It is a weird one to explain,” de Villiers told AFP, as revealed on Tennis365.
“I think the best answer is that every person has their own way of manoeuvring through their career, some as long as possible. “The whole world respects her decision, I would like to think stepping away can be a relief but it is an incredible age to retire”.
Barty shared the stunning news in an Instagram post
In late March, Barty took to Instagram to share the news about her retirement. Last year, Barty achieved her childhood dream of winning Wimbledon. In a conversation with Casey Dellacqua, Barty revealed she started losing motivation shortly after winning Wimbledon.
After Barty won her first Australian Open title, that was it for her. Barty has been playing golf since retiring and some thinks she might try herself in gold in the near future. Meanwhile, Barty was replaced by Iga Swiatek at the No.
1 spot. Swiatek has only lost three matches so far and Barty was one of the three that beat Swiatek. In Adelaide, Barty routinely handled Swiatek. Swiatek is now the world No. 1 and the new face of tennis. Swiatek has proved that she is worthy of being the new world No. 1 as she has won her last 23 matches.