TORONTO — Canadian tennis star Daniel Nestor will be getting much more than a traditional sendoff for his final Rogers Cup appearance this summer.
The doubles veteran will be inducted into the Canadian Tennis Hall of Fame and get the celebratory roast treatment during a gala fundraising event at Roy Thomson Hall on the eve of the ATP Masters Series 1000 tournament.
“We are honoured to induct Daniel at this fantastic event,” Hall chair Robert Bettauer said in a release. “The committee was unanimous in deciding to induct Daniel at his final Rogers Cup, waiving the normal three-year waiting period.
“His achievements are worthy of immediate induction.”
Nestor, 45, turned pro in 1991 and made a name for himself the following year when he stunned top-ranked Stefan Edberg in a five-set Davis Cup thriller in Vancouver. The Toronto resident later focused on the doubles game and went on to win an incredible 91 titles and had 10 stints as a world No. 1.
Nestor has earned US$12.8 million in prize money over his career and won a whopping 1,062 doubles matches.
“I have been fortunate to have such a long and successful career,” Nestor said. “It feels surreal for it to be coming to an end, but I’m ready to give my body some rest and spend more time with my family. I’m honoured that a fund will be created in my name for the next generation of players.
“I cannot think of a better way to go out than being surrounded by my friends and family, I just hope that the guys take it easy on me.”
Several current and former ATP World Tour and Canadian Davis Cup players will take part in the roast, which will be led by actor/comedian Shaun Majumder.
Nestor made his Rogers Cup debut as a 16-year-old wild-card entry in Montreal. The upcoming Aug. 6-12 event at the Aviva Centre in his hometown will be his 30th career appearance at the tournament.
“He’s just well-liked and well-respected by all of the players,” said longtime Rogers Cup tournament director Karl Hale. “Not only doubles (players), but Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, all the top (singles) players respect him and they’re all going to miss him on tour.”
Nestor’s main partners over his career were Mark Knowles, Nenad Zimonjic and Max Mirnyi. He also won Olympic gold with Sebastien Lareau at the 2000 Sydney Games.
Nestor has struggled over the last two seasons, slipping to No. 101 in the latest world rankings. He has played with 11 different partners this year.
He has yet to offer a firm retirement date but will likely call it quits after the U.S. Open in September or sometime this autumn.
In 2009, Nestor became the first player — in singles or doubles — to win a title at all four Grand Slams and all nine ATP Masters 1000 events. In all, he has won 12 Grand Slam doubles titles, played in six Olympic Games and has represented Canada in 52 Davis Cup ties.
“Daniel’s accomplishments will define Canadian tennis long into the future and we look forward to celebrating his remarkable career with a fitting sendoff in August,” said Tennis Canada CEO Michael Downey.
Nestor’s most recent title came in October 2016 at Antwerp with Edouard Roger-Vasselin.
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Gregory Strong, The Canadian Press