2006_09_sagassiopen.jpgAndre Agassi's career has officially ended. After a four set loss at the hands of a familiar tennis foe. Agassi lost 5-7, 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 5-7 to German qualifier Benjamin Becker (no relation to Boris). Over his 21-year career, Agassi played 1144 matches, won 60 titles, and played in 21 consecutive US Opens. The 36 year-old Agassi is a two-time US Open Champion in 1994 and 1999 and a four-time runner-up. The crowd at Arthur Ashe Stadium showered Agassi with applause after the match, cheering for the visibly emotional Agassi for several minutes.

In what almost seemed like a prepared speech after the match, Agassi said:

"The scoreboard said lost I today, but what the scoreboard doesn't say is what it is that I've found. Over the last 21 years, I have found loyalty, you have pulled for me on the court and also in life. I have found inspiration, you have willed me to suceed, sometimes even in my lowest moments and I have found generosity. You have given me your shoulders to stand on, to reach for my dreams, dreams I could have never reached without you. Over the last 21 years, I have found you, and I will take you and the memory of you with me for the rest of my life. Thank you."

It's almost unfortunate that Agassi couldn't retire after his thrilling five set victory over Marco Baghdatis.

Photo of Andre Agassi's emotional farewell by AP/Elise Amendola