It seems Marat Safin may have seen his last Aussie Open.
The towering Russian confirmed he has most likely played his final match in Melbourne during his post-match presser after falling to Roger Federer 3-6, 2-6, 6-7 (5) in the third round:
Q. Do we have a chance to see you back here next year?And what is Marat planning for his post-tennis life?
MARAT SAFIN: I doubt it. I really doubt it. I really doubt it.
Q. How does it make you feel to be saying good‑bye to Grand Slam events?
MARAT SAFIN: I don't like this bye‑bye part. It's just a sad story. It's not for me. I prefer to leave this way, quietly, nice, with a great match.
Unfortunately, I couldn't do better than that, three sets. But anyway, I lost today probably to the better player, one of the greatest ones in the history of tennis. I really hope for him to be so I can tell the story to my kids that I played with him. I think it's a nice story.
Q. What would it take to change your mind about walking away from tennis?
MARAT SAFIN: Nothing. I've been already too many years. I want to change and do something else. I'm ready for that. It's been a nice trip. It's enough.
Q. Do you know what that something else is?
MARAT SAFIN: Yeah, but I'll keep it to myself for the moment. I would love to do that. I'm ready.
Regal Rog expressed his thoughts on the 2-time Grand Slammer and his pending retirement after the match:
He brings something different to the tennis world with his character, the way he is on the court and the way he is off the court. He’s larger than life. I respect him for what a competitor he is. I hope it’s not the last one tonight.Oh what a sad day it will be when Marat hangs up his racquets for good. He's enigmatic, frustrating, colorful, exasperating, and entertaining all wrapped up in a sexy 6' 5" frame.
He'll be sorely missed. *wears sad face*
(images via Getty)