Two-time Grand Slam winner to skip Roland Garros and Wimbledon

A pensive Garbine Muguruza

Former Roland Garros and Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza has announced she will extend her break from tennis and will miss this year’s clay-court and grass-court seasons.

The former world No 1 has play not played any competitive tennis since she lost against Czech teenager Linda Noskova in the opening round of the Lyon Open in February.

“Spending time with family and friends and it’s really been healthy and amazing, so I am going to lengthen this period till summer. Therefore I am going to miss (the) clay and grass season,” she wrote on Instagram.

Having started the year at No 55 in the WTA Rankings, the Spaniard has slumped to No 132 – her lowest ranking since April 2012.

Muguruza’s alarming slump

The 29-year-old has not tasted success since September last year and has suffered four successive first-round defeats in 2023, including at the Australian Open – a tournament where she finished runner-up in 2020.

Her slump, though, started in 2022 as she started the year season at No 3 in the rankings, but failed to make it past the third of any of the four Grand Slams while her best showing at the WTA 1000 events was a run to the quarter-final in Qatar.

She played 17 tournaments last year, but failed to reach any finals and finished the year with a 12–17 record, resulting in her dropping out of the top 50 for the first time since 2013.

Earlier this year Muguruza admitted that she was putting herself under too much pressure and she decided to change her priorities.

“I feel that this year it’s more about keeping it calm and more simple. Last year I put myself under a lot of pressure, telling myself to keep going to stay at the top all the time. That definitely didn’t help me, and it was a bit of a struggle,” she said.

“This year, yes ranking is important – I’ve been at every possible ranking – but that is not my priority anymore. Now it’s about enjoying my time on court and taking the trophies back home, then we’ll see what the ranking is.”

Muguruza at her best

The Spaniard was at her peak between 2015 and 2021 as she finished runner-up to Serena Williams at Wimbledon in 2015, resulting in her rising to a career-high of No 3 in the rankings.

The following year she won her maiden Grand Slam as she beat Williams in the French Open final before adding a second Grand Slam title in 2017 as she beat Venus Williams in the Wimbledon final. Later that year she rose to No 1 while in 2018 she reached the semi-final of the French Open again.

After a mini slump in 2020, she returned to her best form in 2020 as she finished runner-up to Sofia Kenin at the Australian Open and won three titles – including the WTA Finals – but she then suffered an alarming dip in 2022.