"She let's her racket do the talking, I respect that" - John McEnroe pays tribute to Sam Stosur, as Aussie legend readies for retirement

Wednesday, 18 January 2023 at 06:00
Stosur Samantha AustralianOpen2014
John McEnroe has paid tribute to “understated champion” Sam Stosur as she prepares to retire from tennis after the Australian Open. The 38-year-old has announced that she will step away from tennis after her home Grand Slam.
Stosur’s career highlights include winning the 2011 US Open - beating Serena Williams in the final - making the French Open final in 2010, winning seven Grand Slam doubles titles, and reaching world No.1 in women’s doubles.
Having turned pro all the way back in 1999, her longevity in the game has also been one of her most remarkable traits.
“She has always been a quiet, understated champion,” former world No. 1 McEnroe told Eurosport. “She lets her rackuet do the talking, I respect that. I wasn't necessarily that way, but I respect a person that just goes about and does their business, and I'm proud of her, that she was able to open up and be herself, I think that takes some guts.
“I'm sure that as time went on it made her feel even better about herself.”
In 2019 following an awards ceremony, Stosur opened up about her sexuality in an Instagram post, and in 2020 she became a mother along with partner Liz Astling.
Stosur said that it “felt so good just to open up” after not previously mentioning her partner in public.
“I think fans and other players, even old commentators like myself, had known for a while that this was the time that she was going to end,” said McEnroe. “You're talking about someone who won a Grand Slam and was battling at the end of the French Open and was one of the top players in the world.
“It's not easy to make the transition from that to just playing doubles, so I think that at some point that was going to get a little old for her, and I think it's fitting obviously that coming from Australia that she would end it here.
“I wish her the best, she's had a great career, she's going to be in the Hall of Fame in my opinion, so good for her.”
Stosur starts her women’s doubles campaign with Alize Cornet on Thursday.

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