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Nalbandian hangs up his racket

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Originally published on: 02/10/13 00:00

The former world No.3 underwent surgery on his hip and shoulder earlier this year and has slipped outside the world’s top 200 having not played since March.

"I can play matches, but my shoulder won't let me continue my career," said the 31-year-old. "I can't play like that at a [professional] level.

"It's tough because I have to announce my retirement from the sport that gave me so much. I'm very grateful."

The Argentine, who was runner-up to Lleyton Hewitt at Wimbledon in 2002, won 11 titles in his career and reached the semi-finals of the Australian Open (2006), the French Open (2002) and the US Open (2003).

Nalbandian, who finished in the year-end Top Ten rankings five times, memorably came from two sets down to beat Roger Federer in a fifth-set tiebreak to win the 2005 Tennis Masters Cup in Shanghai.

More recently, he hit the headlines for being disqualified at Queen’s last year after kicking an advertising hoarding into a line judge.

Following a news conference in Buenos Aires on Tuesday, Nalbandian announced on Twitter that he would play Rafael Nadal in a series of exhibition matches in November.

"It's a long way to those matches," Nalbandian said. "I'm still in rehab from my injuries and I need to keep training."

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