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30 April 2014

Capdeville says goodbye


Photo: Gastón MonteroPaul Capdeville (CHI)

Paul Capdeville has retired. The man from Santiago turned 31 on 2 April, two days before the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Americas Zone Group II tie against Paraguay, in which they avoided relegation. It was a day on which he was very active on social media, offering support for his compatriots after an earthquake as well as to his team, who prepared for their final test of the year.

On 5 April, Capdeville sent out a clear message from his personal Twitter account, “Thank you Chile for all the support over the recent years.. I am grateful for the generation that I have come from.. THE END”.

His intention was to retire after Roland Garros, but his recent slip down the rankings, currently he is the world No. 246, has stopped him from guaranteeing his place in the draw. Capdeville won the Sao Paulo Challenger last year, which deducted 80 places in the ranking. “I found that they released the entry list later and they had taken off the points I won in Brazil. I don’t have the option to play Roland Garros, so that’s it” he told El Mercurio.

He made his debut in 2002 and his highest singles ranking came in 2009, world No. 76. His best tournament was Vina del Mar, where he won the doubles alongside Spaniard Oscar Hernandez in 2007. In Davis Cup action, he made his debut with a victory against Ecuador at Vina del Mar in 2004 and, without missing a single year since his debut, his last match was a doubles victory against Paraguay in Chile.

When asked if he would like to one day take on the Davis Cup captaincy, Capdeville replied “I would love to. I would love to remain involved in tennis, next to the court. The experiences that someone has and what they have learned should be taught and passed on.” He went on to say “Davis Cup is something which motivates me a lot and I have never turned it down. I said to Nicolas [Massu, the current captain] and the president: if they want me to help out, no problem.”

Recently, Capdeville claimed the bronze medal in both singles and doubles at the 2014 South American Games. In his career he had the opportunity to compete with some of the best players of the era, defeating the likes of David Nalbandian, James Blake, Nicolas Keifer, Tommy Robredo, John Isner, Ivo Karlovic and Nicolas Massu, a former Davis Cup teammate of Capdeville and Chile’s current Davis Cup captain.

After playing 31 rubbers, competing in 19 ties and spearheading one of the most prolific generations in Chile’s tennis history, Capdeville has said ‘adios’.

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