Kim Clijsters' illustrious singles career drew to an emotional close on Wednesday when the former world number one was knocked out of the second round of the US Open by Britain's Laura Robson.
Losing 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) to British teenager Laura Robson was not the way she would have wanted to go out but at 29, after two careers and four Grand Slam titles, the Belgian said she was leaving with no regrets.Clijsters, three-times a US Open champion, remains in the doubles and mixed doubles but the loss to Robson was her final singles match before she quits the tour to concentrate on family life.
She saved two match points in the 12th game of the second set with a searing forehand volley and a huge first serve.
The tiebreak was tense as Clijsters fought to extend her career but Robson, the world number 89 playing with fearless aggression and pinpoint accuracy, converted her third match point and it was all over for the 29-year-old.
"I have played some of my best tennis here and some of my best matches," Clijsters said.
"It is a place that has inspired me. This feels like the perfect place to retire - but I just wish it wasn't today. It's been a great adventure. It's all been worth it but I'm looking forward to the next part of my life."
Robson paid tribute to Clijsters: "I want to say thanks to Kim for being such a great role model for so many years. I have grown up watching you play and it has been an honour to finally play against you."
Defending champion Stosur said "the whole tour" was going to miss having Clijsters around.
The Belgian admitted that hearing her fellow players talk so warmly about her was something extra special.
"It does something to you when you hear other players talk about me like that," she said.