“Let’s come back one more time. See you in 2020”.
Former world No. 1 and four-time Grand Slam champion said these words as she announced her second comeback to professional tennis at the age of 36. The tennis star made her announcement through a heart-warming yet stark video where Clijsters is seen gearing up for a journey where she’s seeking a balance between being a “loving” mom to her three children and also be the “best tennis player” she can possibly be. She says, “For the past seven years, I’ve been a full-time mom, and I love it. I really, really do. But I also loved being a professional tennis player. And honestly, I miss that feeling. So… what if I tried to do both”?
Kim Clijsters last played competitive matches at the 2012 US Open, when she was 29 years old. She turned pro in 1997 and won her first Grand Slam at the US Open in 2005 before walking away from tennis in 2007 at just 23 years old. This will be Clijster’s second comeback; after about two years away while having a daughter, Clijsters returned to professional tennis at the age of 29 and won the 2009 U.S. Open. And then the tennis star went on to win the US Open again in 2010 and the Australian Open in 2011 before walking away from tennis again in 2012. Following her retirement then, the Belgian was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame as a member of the class of 2017.
While Kim Clijsters didn’t exactly reveal when or how often she will compete, but she looks pretty pumped up for the 2020 season as the tennis player said, “My goal right now … is to be able to get fit enough, and ready tennis-wise, to compete at the highest level. That to me would be my challenge, as of right now. And if you get to that stage, then you push yourself, and then it might be like, ‘Hmm, let’s see if I can get, I don’t know, to the second week of a Grand Slam.’ I’ll constantly push myself, I think, if I feel that I’m getting better and improving”.