(CNN) -- Former world number one Justine Henin has confirmed her retirement from tennis for the second time, after failing to recover from the elbow injury she sustained last year.
The 28-year-old Belgian -- the winner of seven grand slam titles in a glittering career -- initially quit the sport in May 2008, but returned at the start of last year and subsequently reached the final of the Australian Open.
However, she sustained an injury to her right elbow in last year's Wimbledon tournament and -- despite playing through the pain to reach the third round at Melbourne this year -- Henin has now decided to call it a day after listening to medical advice.
Confirming the news on her official website, Henin said: "After my crash at Wimbledon last year I knew it would be difficult to come back -- but I had decided to give everything to overcome the injury.
"However, in these recent months I have rarely been spared from the pain and only returning to the tennis court would give me answers.
"Unfortunately I suffered a lot last week and every day gave me more and more pain. I have had tests on my injury and the results are clear -- my elbow is too fragile and damaged for me to continue playing tennis at the highest level," she added.
Henin will go down as one of the greatest players of her era, although failing to win a Wimbledon title -- she twice lost in the final -- is the one missing piece in her impressive career that saw her win four French Open titles, two U.S. Opens and an Australian Open crown.
She topped the world rankings for two years but off court problems, including a much-publicized divorce, were blamed for her sudden initial retirement from the sport after the 2008 French Open.