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Page last updated at 18:28 GMT, Wednesday, 29 April 2009 19:28 UK

Argentine Coria decides to quit

Guillermo Coria
Coria dominated on clay courts during 2003 and 2004

Former world number three and French Open finalist Guillermo Coria has announced his retirement.

The 27-year-old has slipped to 672 in the world rankings after hitting his peak in 2004, the year he made the final at Roland Garros.

"In 2005 I began to feel less and less like competing," said Coria.

"My passion just wasn't the same and it's impossible to do things well when it's like that. In this sport, you have to be at 100%."

Coria dominated on clay for a period, winning nine titles in 20 tour finals on the surface including the Masters events at Hamburg in 2003 and Monte Carlo in 2004.

I didn't have any more desire to compete

Guillermo Coria

He reeled off 31 successive wins on clay heading towards the 2004 French Open and beat Tim Henman in the semi-finals, before falling to compatriot Gaston Gaudio in an epic final after leading 6-0 6-3 4-3 at one stage.

He managed to leave his mark once more with a valiant five-set defeat by his successor as the king of clay, Rafael Nadal, at the 2005 Rome Masters, but desperate problems on serve hastened the Argentine's decline in the following years.

Coria was also banned for two years, later reduced to seven months by the ATP, for his 2001 positive test for the banned substance nandrolone.

He has played just once this year, losing in straight sets to Israel's Harel Levy in Thailand last month.

"I didn't have any more desire to compete," he said. "I had been thinking about it for several months and in Thailand I realised that it was a struggle for me to travel.

"I'm happy with the decision I've taken because I have some new projects and more time to dedicate to my family."

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see also
Gaudio claims French crown
06 Jun 04 |  Tennis
Tearful Coria blames nerves
06 Jun 04 |  Tennis
Coria ends brave Henman bid
04 Jun 04 |  Tennis
Coria backs Rusedski
03 Mar 04 |  Tennis

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