View Full Version : Nthamangela Mbangu-Zeric announces retirement

Oct 28th, 2011, 11:43 AM
Nthamangela Mbangu-Zeric to retire at the end of 2012

Nthamangela Mbangu-Zeric, world number four from Botswana, announced today that 2012 would be her last season on tour. "I am thankful for the time I had on the tour but I have a family now, I have two daughters and I am pregnant again. We will have twins in six months. I want to be all there for them." Mbangu-Zeric started off well into 2011 but succumbed to the pressure falling down from number two to four again. Her runner-up points from the Australian Open 2011 are dropping off soon. "I am living two lives right now and I have to choose one, and I chose my family over my sport." Mbangu-Zeric who was majorly included in the introduction of a junior tour earlier this year says she will focus on that job. "I want to give something back to tennis and I will be the leader of the FWTT Junior Tour from 2013 on."

However, her career is not yet over, Nthamangela is expected to play a full season in 2012. "I have to say goodbye to all the nice people I have met. Of course I hope to perform well, especially in the Olympics where I will team up for doubles with Ruflina. In addition, I hope to qualify for the YEC in Istanbul 2012 but if I don't, I can finish my career in Luxembourg, which would be truly amazing as well, since that is the place where I won my maiden title of any kind", Mbangu said with tears in her eyes.

"I want to thank Ruflina Taliamanosoko for doing such an amazing job in organizing this tour as a main director. Also I want to thank all the players and other people who have been working to keep this tour alive over all this years. I only joined three years ago and I must say, those were the best three years of my life." Mbangu stated she had found so many good friends on tour, many of which will keep playing after the Olympics 2012. "I always wanted to participate in Olympic games, that is my final and only goal I have left." Replacing Mbangu-Zeric in the FWT Tour from 2013 on will probably be current junior world number one Xhakalinda Saikikimbondwe.

"At last, I want to thank all my friends on tour. Ruflina, you are amazing! :hearts: Yanet, my first and one of my dearest friends. :hearts: Luna, my bitch, I love you. :hearts:. Coco, amazing what you have achieved, you are such a valuable addition to the tour. :hearts: Pamela, you have been a great doubles partner and friend. I am truly looking forward to teaming up with you next year. :hearts: Jane, my role-model as a child and forever my friend. :hearts:. Viti, my drinking friend, we can still have one once in a while. :hearts:

"Thank You Ziyi, Ella, Harper, Siri, Jen, Jook, Chantal, Sabine, Cristina, Sylvie, Athea, Giusa, Samantha, Daria, Katy, Marteena, Clair, Saba, Regla, Berenika, Yelena, Alijah, Alex, Nastya, Candela, Elise, Yoona, Caro, Jess, Paula, Em and all the others I forgot. I love you! And I will miss you for sure!"

VSFan1 aka Joshua L.
Oct 28th, 2011, 12:10 PM

The end of an era. I'll never forget when you first entered the tour.

Press release from Ruflina Taliamanosoko

The tour will lose a true starlet at the end of 2012. Nthama has not only been a colleague on the tour, but also a friend and compatriot. I appreciate her hard work and dedication to the game and look forward to working with her on improving the junior tour in 2013 thereafter.

Oct 28th, 2011, 07:29 PM

Oct 28th, 2011, 10:27 PM
Nthama :hug: Thanks for all your great play and nice words and good luck in your last season!

Oct 29th, 2011, 01:02 AM
Good Luck in your last season.

Sam L
Oct 29th, 2011, 02:41 AM
Regla Torres comments on Nthamangela Mbangu-Zeric's retirement announcement: "It's really the end of an era. She will definitely be missed. I do know what she means when she talks about having two lives and having to choose one over the other. It's not easy. I wish her luck in 2012 and I really think we're still to see some big things from her next year."

Oct 29th, 2011, 03:14 AM
:sad: Thank you for being such a good player, i really liked playing against you :bigcry:

Miracle Worker
Oct 29th, 2011, 10:08 AM

Berenika Wojnarowska comments

It's really bad for Tour that such champion as Nthama decided to resign. I'm glad that I'm able to compete with her. She's inspiration for me and other newcomers too. I wish her good luck in her last season and good luck in her post-tennis life

Oct 29th, 2011, 11:51 AM
Jane is very sorry to hear it and hope this decision will be reverted next year

Oct 30th, 2011, 12:13 AM
Kathleen Pryde-Degman comments
"This is a crazy piece of news. It will be so weird not to see her around after all these years. I hope she thinks about it clearly end of next year. I also have been struggling with my personal life and the tour and I must admit I am very inactive on tour and just coming to play on courts only, but I really do enjoy the company of all the people here and I stay on. I hope she can too."

Oct 30th, 2011, 09:41 PM
Elise Mésane comments on Mbangu's retirement plans:

"Ben, c'est dommage qu'elle ait décidé de quitter, but if she's no longer happy playing, than she should pursue other things. I can vividly remember the first time I met her, mostly because it's only been two years or so. I think it was at Birmingham, Jennifer had just won her first Grand Slam, Paula was at the peak of her custard pie making businness, you know, the olden days. Anyway, I was training on Centre Court, because I had a career back then, when two girls walked up to me and introduced themselves as the Mbangu sisters. Of course, one of them shortly died afterwards, but the other just kept annoyingly popping up at every tournament. In a way, Nthama has become my new Fleri. I'll miss her, if only for the massive amount of postcards I got from the exotic islands she represented at one time in her career. Whatever it is she's looking for, I truly hope she finds it in Puerto Nicabarbuata and Nevis. Vraiment."

Oct 31st, 2011, 12:37 AM
"One day she got on tour and the day after it was impossible for anyone not to be aware of who she was. She's a character. She is really involved. She has so much going on that she does need to make hard choices. I'll just enjoy her presence on the tour next season and hopefully she'll have a season great enough to make her stay longer. Afro-babes need her, the tour needs her."

Athea Kane

Oct 31st, 2011, 12:44 AM

Ziyi: "I am so saddened by the sudden news of Nthama's retirement plans come the end of 2012. I hope we will have the opportunity to play together in doubles at least once before the end. The tennis world will be losing one of it's brightest stars, for sure. There are few players more concerned with the well-being of the tour than Nthama is.. a great champion, but above all else, a truly great friend."

Nov 11th, 2011, 06:06 PM
Nthamangela Mbangu-Zeric thanks everyone for their moving words.

Nov 12th, 2011, 08:34 AM

Nov 13th, 2011, 12:01 AM
"She was my best friend. We joined the tour around the same time and we became it girls for a while, on tour we were seen like 2 peas in a pod: Luna and Nthama always did everything together! She was always so enthusiastic, i think that's what the tour will miss the most. :sad:"

Dec 8th, 2011, 10:52 PM
Amidst rumors of retirements and rehab accusations stemming from her disappearing at the end of the 2011 season, not playing in any exhibitions, and having no social network activity, Italian Giuseppina Benedetti released a statement on Nthama Mbangu's announced retirement along with her January commitments today:

"Nthama is an asset to the tour. She is passionate. Passionate in everything she does. She is a great tennis player, but more importantly she is a great person who geniuinely puts her all into the tour. I hope she reconsiders...I know I will miss her."