HomeTennisJewish tennis star Diego Schwartzman announces retirement - Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Jewish tennis star Diego Schwartzman announces retirement – Jewish Telegraphic Agency

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(JTA) — Jewish tennis player Diego Schwartzman announced Sunday that he will retire from professional tennis after his hometown Argentina Open in February 2025.

The 31-year-old Argentine star, who currently sits at No. 142 in the Association of Tennis Professionals men’s rankings, shared the news on Instagram, calling it a “very difficult decision.”

“Every corner of the court, every second training, every point competing, every moment I was immensely happy,” Schwartzman wrote in Spanish. “I lived it with such intensity that today it is difficult for me to maintain. All those beautiful moments have become something that today carries weight and it is difficult for me to continue fully enjoying it.”

Schwartzman, who peaked at No. 8 in the rankings in 2020, has won four ATP titles in his career: the 2016 Istanbul Open, the 2018 Rio Open, the 2019 Los Cabos Open and the 2021 Argentina Open. Schwartzman also reached the semifinals in the 2020 French Open and two quarterfinals in U.S. Open Grand Slams in 2017 and 2019.

Schwartzman, who has 250 career singles victories, is affectionately known as “El Peque,” or “Shorty” in Spanish. Officially listed at 5-foot-7, Schwartzman in 2020 became the shortest man to reach a Grand Slam semifinal since fellow Jewish player Harold Solomon, who is one inch shorter, at the 1980 French Open.

In December 2021, the Hacoaj Jewish sports club in the Tigre district of Buenos Aires inaugurated a new tennis complex and named the central court after Schwartzman, who had gotten his start at the club.

Diego Schwartzman and his father Ricardo pose for photos during the inauguration of a new tennis complex named in the tennis star’s honor in Tigre, Argentina, Dec. 11, 2021. (Courtesy Hacoaj)

“I’m very happy because I started playing tennis here,” Schwartzman told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency at the event. “I’m very grateful to be here at the naming of the central court. It’s very special, I’m trying to enjoy the moment.”

In 2022, Schwartzman visited Israel for the first time to compete in the Tel Aviv Open, which marked the tournament’s return to Tel Aviv after a 26-year hiatus. Schwartzman lost in the second round, but expressed interest in returning to Israel in the future.

“I will come back here for sure at some point in my life, on holidays or to play matches, I don’t know,” he said.

Schwartzman has also written about his family’s Holocaust history. His maternal great-grandfather, who was from Poland, escaped a train on its way to a concentration camp.

And during the 2021 U.S. Open in New York, Schwartzman made headlines for his budding friendship with Jewish actor Ben Stiller.

As the most prominent of the few Jewish players on the ATP tour, Schwartzman became a celebrity of sorts among Jewish fans, especially in his native Argentina.

“I am Jewish and in Argentina, we have many Jewish [people] there, and all the people there know me,” Schwartzman said in 2016, adding that fans often tell him, “Enjoy! Good luck this season. Come on, keep going!”

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