I was gutted when I saw the following article at tennisreporters . net:
Nicole Vaidišová Retires At 20
(Monday 15th March 2010)
Former world No.7 and two-time Major semi-finalist Nicole Vaidišová has retired at the age 20, sources told TennisReporters . net. She's scheduled to marry Czech player Radek Štěpánek in July.
Despite a huge amount of talent, the powerful and temperamental Vaidišová really hit the skids in the past two years, and will end her career ranked No.176 after taking a second-round loss in Memphis last month. She just informed the tournament in Miami that she's turning down a wild card, and pulled out of all her events the rest of the year.
A winner of six WTA titles, Vaidišová reached the semi-finals of the 2006 French Open and 2007 Australian Open before beginning to lose her desire, and battling with her stepfather and coach: Aleš Kodat. She went 11:17 in 2009, and didn't respond to either encouragement or stern words from her friends and family. She couldn't contend with losing, no longer had the desire to compete hard, and began to dislike the sport.
Sources: Vaidišová retires at age 20, will marry
(Monday 15th March 2010)
Sources say that Nicole Vaidišová has retired at the age 20, and will marry fellow Czech player Radek Štěpánek in July.
A former top-ten player and winner of six WTA titles, the big-hitting Vaidišová reached the semi-finals of the 2006 French Open and 2007 Australian Open before falling on hard times.
She went 11:17 in 2009, and will end her career ranked No.176 – well below her career high of No.7 in May 2007. She is said to have tired of losing, and lacks the desire to grind her way back.—Matthew Cronin
To lose a member of my Eternal Fanship at just 20 is devastating, as 20 is still 'young' in tennis-terms. Nicole is actually still the youngest member of my Eternal Fanship (even though I've inducted three more players since I inducted Nicole), and has the potential for an amazing career.
Nicole's huge serve and forehand were – and could be again – two of the biggest weapons I've ever seen in women's tennis. She was also impressively versatile, and had a brilliant ability to improvise. When she reached the semi-finals of the French Open 2006 by beating Amélie Mauresmo and Venus Williams back to back, I thought she was a tremendous fighter with inner belief and inner fire.
Nicole was one of the most precocious youngsters in tennis-history, winning two WTA singles-titles when she was only 15, three more at 16, and her sixth – and sadly last – at 17. She also reached her two Major semi-finals at 17.
Sadly, Nicole lost the plot two years ago, often looking like her mind was a million miles away from the court. Starting with a truly shocking 6-4 6-0 loss to the then-unheralded Alisa Kleybanova at Miami 2008, she embarked on a slump that looked like it was going to be of Jelena Dokić proportions – except that Nicole has decided to pull the plug before reaching the bottom and rising again. Well, Jelena actually decided to retire in 2007, but changed her mind four weeks later.
Nicole's 2010 campaign started with first-round losses at ITF Lutz and ITF Midland. She then actually won a main-draw match on the WTA Tour, beating Laura Granville 6-4 6-2 in the first round of Memphis, and losing 4-6 6-1 6-3 to Kaia Kanepi in the second round.
Nicole's last match was a 4-6 7-6 (12/10) 7-6 (7/4) loss to 17-year-old US Open Girls' Singles champion Heather Watson in the first round of ITF Hammond. Nicole's current ranking is #176, but looks set to drop out of the top 256 as her third-round points from Indian Wells and Miami 2009 come off.
With so many players coming back after announcing their retirements – Kim Clijsters, Justine Henin, Martina Hingis, Kimiko Date Krumm, Alicia Molik – I can only hope that Nicole will join them in the future (perhaps under the name Nicole Štěpánková). Perhaps she needs a long break from tennis right now, but she's got so many tennis-years ahead of her, and it would be a tragic shame to waste her phenomenal talent forever.
Dr. Andrew Broad