Four-times Grand Slam champion Kim Clijsters plans to come out of retirement after a seven-year hiatus, returning to the WTA Tour in 2020, the 36-year-old Belgian said on Thursday. I really, really do. I still love to play tennis, whenever I'm at a Grand Slam playing the Legends, if somebody asked me hey, do you want to hit some balls, I'm the first one to be like I'll hit.
"That to me would be my challenge, as of right now", Clijsters said.
"But I also love being a professional tennis player".
"And I do feel like. So. what if I tried to do both?" Clijsters beat Williams in the semifinals in a match best remembered for Williams' tirade against a lineswoman who called her for a foot fault. I was very young when I retired to have my first daughter and came back. "See you in 2020", she added.
Clijsters is eligible for unlimited wild cards at WTA tournaments because of her former world number one status, but she will have to play three tournaments or earn 10 points to re-establish a ranking.
But the 36-year-old has now made the shock decision to return to action next year.
Clijsters turned pro in 1997, won the US Open for the first time in 2005 and walked away from tennis in 2007 at just 23, shortly before getting married to an American basketball player, Brian Lynch.
During her time in retirement, the former player worked as a commentator and at her tennis academy, according to BBC. "I want to see how far I can push myself and what level I can get to - and embrace all the positives and negatives along the way".
"If I want to be able to compete with these girls, I'm going to have to be the fittest that I ever have been and to be able to move like I did in the past". "I still have three and a half months before and so I still think I can have a lot of improvement to go through in these next few months and that I look forward to seeing where that will lead me".
"I'm actually leaving the house in the morning after I've had breakfast, like back in the day like with the three kids, I would sometimes just finish a little bit of oatmeal that Jada left in her bowl, or the kids left fruit out on the table that they didn't eat".