“I only have one wish that didn’t come true" - Former doubles Grand Slam champion and Olympic medallist Lucie Hradecka calls it a day

Cleveland Championships - Day 5
Lucie Hradecka has called time on her career.

Doubles specialist Lucie Hradecka has called time on her illustrious career while bemoaning the absence of a singles title on her resume.

The 37-year-old is a bonafide modern-day doubles great — winning three Grand Slam titles, two Olympic medals and five Billie Jean King Cups.

Two of her Grand Slam doubles titles came with compatriot Andrea Sestini Hlavackova — at the 2011 French Open and the 2013 US Open. The other, in mixed doubles, came with another compatriot, Frantisek Cermak, at Roland Garros in 2013.

The left-hander has won 26 doubles titles — including three WTA 1000s — but couldn't do so in singles despite making seven finals. Speaking in Ostrava, she said that it would remain a regret — 'a wish that didn't come true' — in a largely fulfilling career.

Hradecka said:

“I only have one wish that didn’t come true: I wanted to win a WTA title in singles. But I’m pretty happy with my career.”

Hradecka and Hlavackova won silver at the London 2012 Olympics, losing to the Williams sisters (Serena and Venus) in the women's doubles gold medal match. Four years later, Hradecka combined with Radek Stepanek to win bronze in mixed doubles at the Rio Games.

Hradecka — who hits both forehands and backhands double-handed — played her last match in Guadalajara. Playing doubles with Chan Hao-ching, she lost to Jelena Ostapenko and Lyudmila Kichenok in straight sets in the first round.

"It's time to say goodbye" - Lucie Hradecka

Lucie Hradecka (right) at the 2022 Credit One Charleston Open.
Lucie Hradecka (right) at the 2022 Credit One Charleston Open.

During a career that spanned more than a decade, Lucie Hradecka more than made a name for herself in doubles — where she recorded a 622-292 win-loss record.

Rising to a career-high World No. 4 in doubles in 2012, Hradecka was no dud in singles — reaching a career-high ranking of 41. Considering her success in Grand Slams, Olympics and Billie Jean King Cup, the 37-year-old leaves behind a rich legacy, especially in Czech tennis.

However, the left-hander knows nothing goes on forever and has stepped aside to allow younger girls to come to the fore. She said:

“It’s time to say goodbye and put the focus on the younger ones. I’m glad to share my experience. If they learn something from me and one day they remember it, that makes me happy.”

She didn't win a title this year but reached two finals. In the final title clash of her career, Lucie Hradecka and Sania Mirza lost to Nicole-Melichar Martinez and Daria Saville in Strasbourg in May.

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Edited by Anirudh
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