It was all over in one overwhelming moment at the US Open.
Andre Agassi hitting the last ball on centre court; Agassi making that final bow; Agassi blowing the final kiss, and retiring into the shadow of our memory. Permanently.
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Which Agassi will we remember then? The blond brat who redefined baseline play by his hurried technique; the rising teenage star who set the court alight as much in his neon shorts; the bored genius who cracked under the pressure of expectations, or the Agassi who picked up the pieces of his life with dignity, the individualist who strived to give others pleasure, the humble champion and statesman of the sport?
It may all come in one flash. Because though the Agassi who made his tour debut at 16 is distinctly different from the one that retires 20 years later, the two personas are equally celebrated.
Andre Agassi the colossus would not have been without Andre Agassi the maverick!
Photographs: AFP/Getty Images | Text: Deepti Patwardhan