A heartbroken Andy Murray has announced he will be forced to retire this year.
A debilitating hip injury has left the former world number one in near constant agony and the Scot says he has no choice but to finish up.
Speaking ahead of the Australian Open the 31-year-old admits it could be his last tournament even though is aim it to play through the pain to get to Wimbledon.
But a tearful Murray's has conceded his days are numbered: “I'm going to play. I can still play to a level, just not a level that I'm happy playing at.
"But it's not just that. The pain is too much really and I don't want to continue playing that way."
"I spoke to my team and I told them that I can't keep doing this, that I needed to have an end point because playing with no idea when this, the pain, was going to stop.
"I said to my team: look, I think I can get through this till Wimbledon. That is where I'd like to stop playing.
"But I'm also not certain I'm able to do that."
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 11, 2019
Andy Murray was in tears as he spoke to journalists ahead of the Australian Open
Murray admits he will likely be forced to have another operation to try and improve his quality of life, but that move will not be done with a view to returning to the court:
“I'm not sure I'm able to play through the pain for another four or five months I have an option to have another operation.
"Which is a little bit more kind of severe than what I've had before - having my hip resurfaced - which will allow me to have a better quality of life and be out of pain.
“That's something that I'm seriously considering right now, some athletes have had that and have gone back to competing.
“But there's obviously no guarantees with that, the reason for having an operation like that is not to return to professional sports, you know, it's just for a better quality of life.
“There's lots of little things that obviously you guys see me running around a tennis court, walking in between points, and obviously I know it doesn't look good, it doesn't look comfortable.
"There's little things, day-to-day that are also a struggle, it would be nice to be able to do them without any pain, putting shoes on, socks on, things like that.