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lexi thompson retirement

Why is Lexi Thompson retiring at the age of 29?

Lexi Thompson revealed why she has decided to retire at the age of 29 in a press conference at the 2024 US Women’s Open.

 

Lexi Thompson believes “there are more things to life” than the rigorous routine of the LPGA Tour.

The 29-year-old said she “is looking forward to what life has in store” away from professional golf after announcing she will retire from a field she has worked in since the age of 15 and a game that has been ingrained since childhood.

Having played in the US Women’s Open at 12 years old, Thompson went on to win the 2014 Chevron Championship and 11 LPGA Tour titles, as well as represent the United States six times at the Solheim Cup.

She wants to play against Europe for the seventh time later this year, but she told the press at the 2024 US Women’s Open that she was at peace with her decision to retire, 14 years after turning professional.

“Like I said, it’s my 14th year and I’m not going to sit here and say it hasn’t crossed my mind in the past few years, but I feel like I’m at a point in my life where it is time to just step away from a full-time schedule,” she said.

“There are more things to life than going to a tournament every week and doing the same training every day. There’s just more to it and I’m looking forward to experiencing that, and I feel like I’m very content with where my life is and where this decision will lead me, so I’m just looking forward to what life has in store other than golf.

“Honestly just staying true to myself,” she added. “Being out here can be a lot. It can be lonely (she became emotional) – I just think especially with what’s happened in golf recently too. A lot of people don’t realise a lot of what we go through as a professional athlete. I’d be the last one to say like, throw me a pity party, that’s the last thing I want.

“But we’re doing what we love. We’re trying our best every single day and we’re not perfect. We’re humans. Words hurt and it’s hard to overcome sometimes, but having the people around you that love you and support you, and I feel like that’s been the biggest thing for me.”

lexi thompson retirement

(Main image: USGA/Jason Miczek. Image above: USGA/Jason Miczek)

Lexi Thompson retirement: ‘ I will say yes, I’ve struggled with it’

As well as the many highs Thompson has reached there have been lows too, such as taking on board criticism which she admitted is hard to swallow. In 2018, she took a month away from the game “to focus on herself.”

A year before, Thompson was given a staggering four-shot penalty at the Chevron Championship for improperly replacing her ball after marking it and then signing an incorrect scorecard. She has suffered major near-misses at the 2019 and 2021 US Opens.

She has considered retirement for the last few years but never found the right time to call it. She revealed she will launch a new Lexi fitness app in her retirement and alluded to starting a family. Not only has her success led to her rocketing popularity, but her powerful and aggressive play on the golf course. At the end of last year, she became the seventh woman to play on the PGA Tour.

When Thompson was asked about her mental health issues at Lancaster Country Club, she admitted to being a sufferer and again referred to the arduous life of being an LPGA Tour player, having won for the first time when she was 16.

“I feel like mental health is such an important thing just for that everyday person, not just athletes. Everybody out here has their own struggles,” she added. “That’s why I always say just don’t judge anybody because you don’t know what they’re going through and what they have going on in their mind, in their heart and just be gentle with them.”

“I think we all have our own struggles, especially out here. Unfortunately in golf, you lose more than you win, so it’s an ongoing battle to continue to put yourself out there in front of the cameras and continue to work hard and maybe not seeing the results you want and getting criticised for it.

“So it’s hard, I will say yes, I’ve struggled with it. I don’t think there’s somebody out here that hasn’t. It’s just a matter of how well you hide it which is very sad and it’s an important thing to address and be OK with getting help, getting support and surrounding yourself with the people who support you and love you because there are always people that do care so much about you and will help you get through those tough moments.”

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Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spoken to the likes of Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell, Henrik Stenson, to name just a few.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

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