Graf happy out of limelight

2011-10-02 16:04

Berlin - Tennis legend Steffi Graf said Sunday she is happy to have shunned the limelight to focus on her career as a mother, 12 years after retiring.

The 42-year-old quit in 1999 having won 22 Grand Slam titles during her career to be one of the most successful tennis players of all time.

She married former tennis star Andre Agassi in 2001 and the couple live in Las Vegas, in the USA, with their children Jaden Gil, nine, and Jaz Elle, eight.

"My job now is primarily to be a mother," Graf told German daily the Berliner Morgenpost on a rare visit to the capital to open a tea shop.

Graf said she opts for fewer public appearances as they still make her nervous.

"At public appearances, I am often nervous and have butterflies in my stomach," she said.

"I am not used to such appearances any more and I am only rarely at things like this."

Despite more than a decade away from professional sport, the German admits she has not lost the habit of staying in shape.

"If I have the feeling that I need time for myself, I do sports," she said.

"It still plays an important role in my life. I don't do it quite so often, but still a couple of times a week."