No on-court interview. No sentimental comments. Marat Safin, the 2000 champ, just packed his bag, waved good-bye, and exited the court closing out his Grand Slam career after falling to Jurgen Melzer 1-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 in the US Open first round.
Check out this Sports Illustrated article about the giant Russian which calls him "one of the game's great wastes." Nice.
Fabrice Santoro also played perhaps his last major match today going down to Juan Carlos Ferrero 6-4, 6-3, 6-3. Au revoir Magician - in case you don't change your mind.
UPDATE: Click here for Marat's post-match presser - classic stuff. Some highlights...
Q. What are you going to do?
MARAT SAFIN: I will see. But definitely I want to get out a little bit of tennis scene and try something completely different. I have plenty of time to think about it.
I just felt like it's it's been a long ride, so I need some time off, you know. It's enough. It was a great 12 years of my career. I don't think I played five years and I retired. I've been around for a long time.
Q. Djokovic said yesterday you told him you were going to go and climb a mountain South America; is that right?
MARAT SAFIN: Djokovic has the breaking news, huh? (Laughter) I think he should stick to his tennis and keep his mind into tennis instead of giving up my private life. (laughter.)
Q. Stefan Edberg, when he retired, he announces it a year before he did. He had a farewell tour.
MARAT SAFIN: Yeah, and he was getting tired of doing it every week.
Q. Very tired.
MARAT SAFIN: Bye bye, bye bye, and bye bye again.
Q. I'm sure you will not miss some of the questions. What will you miss most from the tennis?
MARAT SAFIN: Good question.
I think I need to get away from tennis for some time to realize what I will miss, what I'm missing about it. Right now, just difficult to decide what exactly I will miss. Because it's great traveling. It's pretty great life.
But also it's in one way. In second way, in a different way, you have to practice. You have to go to the courts. You have to, like for example, here first few days it's like a zoo. It's like a million people running around, brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, grandmothers, so many people. That's pretty much annoying.
But at the same time you know you're going to New York and it's beautiful town. You're staying in good hotels. The people, they treat you well. You get the car service, which I think is great. You go to the great restaurants.
You can spend don't have to think how much I can spend on my dinner. So it gives you a good life. You have to pay for it being here on the court and stress out. 4 All in, I don't know, third set, the tiebreak, but you have to work your way through.
I will be able to give you a right answer in a year or so.
Q. How difficult was to be No. 1? You were young. And then you talk about your sister; she's No. 1. You told us also about the papers writing about your private life. And also you remember Safinettes, the girls?
MARAT SAFIN: Still remember?
Q. So for your sister, it is not the same problem. At least she doesn't have all these boyfriends and pictures.
MARAT SAFIN: Well, everybody is hard on her why she's No. 1. You have this contest issue, is she a real No. 1 or not? You open the page, she made eight double faults, 43 unforced errors. She struggled, almost lost to 18 years old.
Who cares? I mean, she's No. 1 in the world. I have to protect my sister. The poor girl, she's trying her best. She's doing really well. She gets the attention, but not the kind of attention that a person deserves, especially when you're No. 1 in the world.
Everybody is giving her hard time about, Are you really No. 1 in the world? Yes, yes, she's really No. 1 in the world. Go check on the ranking. She didn't do the ranking.
Apparently there is some guy who made the ranking. On this ranking, she's No. 1 in the world. Serena, she didn't say even though she won two Grand Slams this year, she's No. 2. Sorry, but that's the way. Deal with that.
I'm just personally, I'm really like, I have to protect her. I feel like she deserve a little bit more than what she's getting right now. I think she's playing you can't imagine how crazy she is about sport. I don't think there is one person in the world who is more professional than her.
Everybody is like hitting on her and giving her a hard time about this, how many, what happened to this serve, what happened this, what happened with that? Leave her alone. Give her a little bit less questions. So it's just all to you guys. Make her happy. That's it.
Q. Luckily she doesn't have all those boyfriends as you had girlfriends.
MARAT SAFIN: Yeah. Yes, she's opposite of me.
(Photos: AP, Getty)