MANCHESTER, England - Rio Ferdinand brought his trophy-filled, 12-year stay at Manchester United to an end on Monday by announcing he would be leaving Old Trafford to continue his playing career. The 35-year-old Ferdinand, who became Englands most expensive player when he joined United from Leeds for 29.1 million pounds in 2002, has not been offered an extension to his contract that expires next month. He suggested, however, that his departure was on his own terms, saying in a statement: "I have thought long and hard over the last few months about my future, and after 12 fantastic years playing, for what I regard, as the best club in the world, I have decided the time is right for me to move on." A tall, elegant, ball-playing defender, Ferdinand made 454 appearances for United — his last coming in the 1-1 draw at Southampton on Sunday in the final match of the season. He had been marginalized by the club this season, making just 14 appearances. Ferdinand won six league titles, two League Cups, one Champions League and a Club World Cup with United and forged one of Premier Leagues great centre-back partnerships with Nemanja Vidic, who will also leave this summer to join Inter Milan. With left back Patrice Evra soon out of contract, too, whoever comes in as the full-time replacement for fired United manager David Moyes faces a huge task to rebuild the defence. Ferdinand has had injury problems in recent years — particularly with his back — and has been following a strict training regime to extend his career, but he signalled he is not ready to retire. "I am feeling fit and healthy, ready for a new challenge and looking forward to whatever the future holds for me," he added in the statement. While Vidic was afforded an emotional farewell at Old Trafford in his final home match, receiving a memento from club great Bobby Charlton before last weeks Premier League game against Hull and a rousing ovation from Uniteds fans, Ferdinand will leave without any ceremony. Sections of the British media reported Monday that Ferdinand was told in the dressing room after the Southampton match that he wouldnt be offered a new deal. "Circumstances didnt allow for me to say goodbye the way I would have liked," he added in the statement, "but Id like to take this opportunity to thank my teammates, staff, the club and the fans for an unbelievable 12 years that Ill never forget. Winning trophies I dreamed about as a kid came true at this great club." The low point of his spell at United undoubtedly came in 2003 when he was banned for eight months after being found guilty of missing a drugs test. 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Tennis Australia chief executive Craig Tiley told local media in comments published Wednesday that John Tomic would not be allowed into Melbourne Park in any official capacity or as a spectator. ST. JOHNS, N.L. -- The second period was costly for the St. Johns IceCaps on Saturday. Peter Mannino made 31 saves and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton got goals from three different skaters as the Penguins edged the St. Johns IceCaps 3-2 in Game 1 of the American Hockey League Eastern Conference final. "We only had four or five shots in the second period and thats not enough," said IceCaps forward Andrew Gordon. "We need more zone time and offensive opportunities, (especially) second chance opportunities. We didnt create that in the second period. We were a little too easy to play against and not physical enough." Gordon had a pair of goals for St. Johns, while Michael Hutchinson stopped 29 shots. Chuck Kobasew, Conor Sheary and Tom Kostopoulos scored for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. IceCaps head coach Keith McCambridge said his team lost its focus, ultimately costing St. Johns the game. "We got off our game in the second period, we made mental errors and didnt have the intensity you need to have in the conference finals," said McCambridge. "At the end of the day, the second period hurt us." No one was blaming Gordon for the loss. After the wingers two-goal effort on the night, coach McCambridge was left wishing the rest of the teamm had followed Gordons example.dddddddddddd "You have to make sure that when you have opportunities you capitalize, and when you put pucks to the net, you are looking for second and third chances. Andrew Gordon did a really good job on that," McCambridge said. "When we had good chances in the second period, we got away from that. Theres not a lot of space out there, (the Penguins) defend really well. " The Penguins opened the scoring 7:02 into the game, when Kobasew finished off a 2-on-1 in front with an easy tap-in from a perfect Brian Gibbons pass. Gordon tied it for the IceCaps at 13:42 of the first period, pulling the puck out front from behind the net before sniping it top shelf on the blocker side. Sheary put the Penguins ahead 2-1 when Hutchinson lost the puck on a wrist shot by the winger. Sheary continued to the net and tapped in his own rebound 2:32 into the second period. Kostopoulos took a pass while entering the zone and scored a quick wrist shot high blocker with 5:24 left in the second period to put Wilkes-Barre/Scranton up by two goals. With the teams playing 4-on-4, Gordon scored his second of the game, one-timing a face-off win from John Albert, to pull the IceCaps within one 5:31 into the third period. ' ' '