Two years after winning her first major at the 2005 U.S. Open, an injury-plagued Clijsters chose to quit the game at the age of 23 to start a family, returning two years later to claim her second U.S. Open as an unranked player in only her third tournament back.
Four-time grand slam victor Kim Clijsters has announced she is coming out of retirement and earmarked 2020 for a return to the court.
These include contemporary Serena Williams, as well as Victoria Azarenka.
Former world No 1 Kim Clijsters has announced a shock second comeback to tennis at the age of 36, after a seven-year hiatus. In all, she amassed 41 singles titles in her career, including four majors, three WTA Finals titles (2002, 2003, 2010), and held the No.1 ranking for a total of 20 weeks. In the interim, she gave birth to her daughter Jada in February of 2008, and she came out of retirement to play her first tournaments in August 2009 at the Western & Southern Open and Rogers Cup, immediately tallying two Top 10 wins.
The Belgian told the WTA Insider Podcast: "I don't really feel like I want to prove something".
Next year, she's going to try, Clijsters shared. She retired again after the 2012 U.S. Open and later worked as as a tennis commentator and part-time coach.
Belgium's former world number one Kim Clijsters announced on Thursday her return to competitive tennis in 2020, seven years after retiring to become a stay-at-home mum of three children. We can talk about the start of 2020 and see where can we get a wildcard, but if I feel in December that I'm not even near to where I want to be, then I'm not going to go just for the sake of going somewhere. 'Me, too.' I'm 36 years old.
WTA rules allow her, as a past Grand Slam champion, to receive unlimited wild-card invitations to tournaments and, as someone who is older than 30, to opt out of mandatory appearances at certain events.
"I can't wait to get back on the match court and see what's possible after having three children".