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World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty retires from professional tennis at age 25

This is a shocking development as Ashleigh Barty was the favorite in two of the remaining three Grand Slams on the 2022 calendar.

In this Handout Photo provided by Tennis Australia, Ashleigh Barty poses with the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup as she visits Uluru in the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Australia on Friday, February 25, 2022. Photo by Scott Barbour/Tennis Australia via Getty Images

The top women’s tennis player in the world has retired from the game, as Ashleigh Barty has announced her separation from the game.

“I just had that gut feeling after Wimbledon,” said Barty in her Instagram post. “And then came the challenge of the Australian Open. And I think for me that feels like the most perfect way, my perfect way, to celebrate what an amazing journey my tennis career has been.

“I’m really, really excited.”

A three-time Grand Slam champion, Barty won the 2022 Australian Open just two months ago in Melbourne.

“I don’t have the physical drive, the emotional want, and kind of everything it takes to challenge yourself at the very top level anymore. And I just know that I’m absolutely, I am spent. I just know physically I have nothing more to give.”

The Queensland, Australia native has earned over $23 million in prize money, and is one of the most marketable athletes in the world. Her stunning retirement moves the lines at the French Open from DraftKings Sportsbook, where she was listed at +450 to win, the second choice on the board behind Iga Swiatek.

What the future holds for her is still unknown, but this is perhaps the most unexpected retirement of an athlete at the peak of their prime since Michael Jordan. A stunning moment in the history of tennis.