Rafael Nadal insists his career which has yielded 14 Grand Slam titles and $73 million is not finished, but evidence was mounting Friday that the Spaniard has reached the end of the road.
The 29-year-old Nadal suffered a fourth successive Wimbledon exit at the hands of a player ranked 100 and lower when dread-locked Rastafarian Dustin Brown dumped him out in the second round on Thursday.
It was another reality check for a man who was champion in 2008 and 2010 and runner-up in 2006, 2007 and 2011.
A player whose relentless attacking style is based on murderous hitting off both wings was always likely to have a sell-by date.
Increasingly it looks like 2015 is the endgame for Nadal who has won a legion of fans for his success on the court and engaging humility off it.
He was defeated in the quarter-finals at the Australian Open and at the French Open this year.