Kim Clijsters itching to start playing again as she reveals how she drew inspiration from Andy Murray
It has been a while since Kim Clijsters has played competitively as her second comeback has suffered several setbacks so naturally the former world No 1 is excited about her upcoming match at the Chicago Fall Classic.
Seven years after retiring from tennis, Clijsters made her return in February 2020 as she competed in two WTA Tour events before the sport was forced to go on a hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The four-time Grand Slam winner then continued her comeback at last year’s US Open, losing in the opening round, before knee surgery forced her not only to end her 2020 season early, but also delayed her 2021 return.
Clijsters will finally step foot on court again on Monday as she will take on Hsieh Su-Wei in Chicago.
“I’ve been practicing for a long time so I’m excited to start playing matches again,” the Belgian said during her press conference. “That’s the reason I’m here, to play more matches so I can slowly build my level and get more match rhythm and match routine under my belt.
“I feel like in practice I’m doing a lot of things well and I’m getting fitting and stronger. Now it’s just a matter of trying to get enough matches.”
The 38-year-old also explained what “triggered” her latest comeback.
“Going to some of the events and hitting with some of the players just triggered a challenge within myself,” she said. “That was the main reason, that little trigger of, I wonder if I can get myself in a situation where I can play the tennis I like to play and I know I can play.”
It is no easy task returning to competitive tennis, but she is hoping to take a leaf out of Andy Murray’s book with the former men’s world No 1 also on the comeback trail after missing nearly two years due to a long-standing hip injury.
‘My goal is not to get in the top 100,’ says Andy Murray as he reveals his ambitions and what motivates him
“Seeing Andy Murray and the way he speaks about his comeback and everything, it’s so motivating and it gives you a lot of energy too,” Clijsters said.
“To see him go through the things he’s gone through and be open about the challenges of it and the belief that he has, I feel like it’s something I can relate to.”
Davis Cup: Australia produce stunning fightback to reach final
Australia show fight to down Croatia and take a step towards another Davis Cup title.
Casper Ruud delighted with season despite big final losses
Casper Ruud says he has overachieved.
Frances Tiafoe reveals his preferred holiday destination
‘Big Foe’ cools his heels in Turks and Caicos.
Who is Carlos Alcaraz’s girlfriend: Maria Gonzalez Gimenez
Carlos Alcaraz is dating Maria Gonzalez Gimenez, a law student and aspiring tennis pro.
Australian Open 2023: Who are the early favourites for the men’s singles
Novak Djokovic is out to complete La Decima at the Australian Open in 2023.
Rafael Nadal’s beautiful tribute to Roger Federer: ‘A part of my life left with him’
Rafael Nadal on Roger Federer’s emotional farewell.
Patrick Mouratoglou predicts ‘big fight’ between generation of Daniil Medvedev and young guns like Carlos Alcaraz
Generation Medvedev vs generation Alcaraz: Who will win the “fight”.
Rafael Nadal to play until he is 40? Former world No 1 explains why Spaniard has a few more years left
Mats Wilander gets his crystal ball out and predicts when Rafael Nadal will retire.
Denis Shapovalov pays ‘huge credit’ to Felix Auger-Aliassime as Canada set up Italy showdown at Davis Cup
Italy defeated USA before Canada came from 1-0 down to see off Germany.
Second generation ATP Pro Ben Shelton taking stock after big season
Ben Shelton is the youngest of 13 Americans in the top 100.