Australian professional tennis player Casey Dellacqua has announced her retirement. In a video posted to her social media, the 33-year-old said she wanted to spend more time with her family. She has been with her female partner, Amanda Judd for almost ten years. They have two children, Blake and Andie.
In the video, Dellacqua said, ‘It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a while and I definitely feel like it’s the right time to hang up the racquets and be a mum.
‘It’s time for me to spend time with my family, particularly while my kids are young. It’s a precious time in life and I really feel it’s a time where I want to be at home with my family.
‘I’ve been so fortunate to have a great career doing what I absolutely love and fulfilling my childhood dream of being a professional athlete. If there’s one thing I’m going to miss about playing professional tennis, it’s playing for Australia. It was always the highlight of my career and it’s something I’ll always cherish.’
She says thank you to all her family and friends, her support team and sports fans who had followed her career.
Dellacaqua has competed in the Australian, French and US Open, as well as Wimbledon.
She has competed in the women’s singles, but achieved her greatest professional success in the doubles. She and partner Scott Lipsky won the French Open Mixed Doubles in 2011, and she has reached the finals of the doubles competitions in several other Grand Slams.
She and Judd have been together for the past decade and have faced online criticism in the past for raising their children without a father. Some of the criticism came from former tennis legend Margaret Court: one of Australia’s staunchest voices against marriage equality.
Dellacaqua responded to the criticism by saying, ‘At the time I was really hurt. I mean, I was hurt because I actually know Margaret personally.
‘I’m very conscious of the fact that everyone is allowed their opinion, but when you start singling out my family especially, that’s when it’s not okay.
‘My family do not deserve to be subject to that.’
Dellacaqua has not said what she plans to do next, career-wise, but says she’s very ‘excited for the next chapter of my life.’
She posted a photo of herself and her kids to Instagram today to say she had been overwhelmed by the response to her video.
‘It’s moments like these just hanging out with my beautiful kids at the beach of an arvo that I won’t miss out on anymore guys, yay.
‘OMG THANKYOU everyone for all your messages. There is so many of them. I am so extremely overwhelmed at the moment.
‘I will do my best to get back to you all but just wanted to say a big thank you to each & everyone one of you who has written to me. I read them & I am so feeling the love.’