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Former world No. 3 Ljubicic to hang up his racket

ESPN staff
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Ivan Ljubicic won 10 titles on the ATP Tour © Getty Images
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Former world No. 3 Ivan Ljubicic has announced his plans to retire from the ATP Tour.

A former Davis Cup winner and Olympic bronze medallist, Ljubicic will play his final tournament at the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters next month.

The 6'4" Croat, who will turn 33 later this month, claimed the biggest victory of his career at Indian Wells in 2010 when he beat Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Andy Roddick en route to a 10th and final career title.

He won the Davis Cup with Croatia in 2005, and Olympic bronze in doubles with Mario Ancic at the 2004 Athens Games.

"It's never an easy decision for any professional athlete to retire," said Ljubicic, who has slipped to No. 40 in the world rankings. "I look forward to the next stage of my life. Tennis has given me so much and I want to continue to stay involved and contribute in some ways."

Ljubicic also served six years on the ATP Player Council, including two years as president before being elected onto the board of directors in 2008.

Roger Federer, who succeeded Ljubicic as Player Council president, paid tribute to the Croat as "one of the most feared players on tour".

"I have a very good friendship with Ljubicic, and it's been sad seeing him retiring really since I've known about it for quite some time," Federer said. "We've talked at length at times about it, but I think it comes at the right time for him and he's in a perfect spot with his family. He's just had a second daughter. He's had a wonderful career.

"He's one of the most feared players on tour. He has a great future ahead in tennis or whatever he wants to do, because he's a bright man and he's a great person. It's sad seeing him go, but he's had a wonderful career and I can only congratulate him for that."

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