Seven-time world snooker champion Stephen Hendry has announced his retirement from professional snooker following his defeat in the word championship.
Stephen Hendry, the Scottish snooker player, and the most successful player of the modern era (with seven world titles) announced his retirement from professional snooker on May 1. The announcement followed Hendry's heavy defeat at the hands of Stephen Maguire in the 2012 world professional snooker championship. Hendry was beaten 13-2 in the quarter-finals.
The announcement, as reported on the BBC, came as a surprise to most, as The Daily Mail notes including his victorious opponent Maguire. Although Hendry's form had tailed off over the last few year he had displayed good form in the world championship and compiled a 147 maximum break in his first round match.
The Guardian reports that Hendry had been planning his retirement for sometime, irrespective of what happened in the tournament. Hendry said "I didn't tell many people. I only told two or three people, but this is me finished from tournament snooker," Hendry said. "It was quite an easy decision. There's a few reasons. The schedule didn't help. The fact that I'm not playing the snooker I want to play didn't help. The fact I'm not enjoying practice doesn't help."
Despite the announcement Hendry will for many years remain the most successful snooker player, certainly of the past few decades and may be of all time. In addition to his seven world titles, Hendry won five UK championships and a total of 32 ranking tournaments.
One of Hendry's long-time rivals, Jimmy White, tweeted several times in response (according to The Daily Mirror):
"He was and is an unbelievable snooker player & has nothing to prove. I hope he enjoys his retirement he really deserves it!
"He's always put snooker first, been a model professional, credit to the game and I'll see him in the legends tour this year for more battles.
"I thank him sincerely for some of the best matches and memories of my own career. I'm not sure his records will ever be equalled!"
It will be interesting to see what Stephen Hendry, at a comparatively young 43 years of age, does which the remainder of his post-snooker career.