Serena Williams breaks down in tears with emotional goodbye after final Toronto match

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Serena Williams broke down in tears as she bid an emotional goodbye to Toronto after crashing out of the Canadian Open on Wednesday. The legendary tennis player revealed earlier this week that she is set to retire from the sport nearly 25 years after playing her first Grand Slam event.

Williams took to the court for the first time since she told Vogue that she planned to turn her attentions to other things as she took on Belinda Bencic. But the 40-year-old struggled to assert her dominance as Bencic cruised to a 6-2, 6-4 victory. And following the match, Williams’ emotions were evident.

“It was a lot of emotions obviously,” the American told the crowd as she was interviewed on court. “I love playing here, I’ve always loved playing here. I wish I could have played better but Belinda played so well today. It’s been an interesting 24 hours. As I said in the article, I’m terrible at goodbyes. But goodbye Toronto.”

Williams then wiped a tear off her face as she said: “Anyways, this is what it is,” And as she gestured to the fans behind her, who roared in response, she added: “I was really happy to be out here today and play in front of you guys – thanks for the support.”

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The player then smiled as she said “thank you” after being handed a gift from the Toronto Maple Leafs NHL and the Toronto Raptors NBA franchises as the presentation came to an end.

Williams burst onto the tennis scene when she was a teenager and played in her first Grand Slam at the age of just 16 when she reached the second round of the Australian Open in 1998. She was crowned US Open champion in 1999 when she was still only 17 years old. And the ace has gone on to win an incredible 23 Grand Slam titles.

But the superstar missed a year of action after being forced to pull out of her first round match with Aliaksandra Sasnovich at last year’s Wimbledon and wasn’t able to return to the court for a year. And the ace penned an article in Vogue on Tuesday to reveal she would call time on her career after the upcoming US Open.

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“I’ve been reluctant to admit that I have to move on from playing tennis,” she wrote. “It’s like a taboo topic. It comes up, and I start to cry. I think the only person I’ve really gone there with is my therapist.

“I have never liked the word retirement. It doesn’t feel like a modern word to me. I’ve been thinking of this as a transition, but I want to be sensitive about how I use that word, which means something very specific and important to a community of people. Maybe the best word to describe what I’m up to is evolution. I’m here to tell you that I’m evolving away from tennis, toward other things that are important to me.”



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