Former No. 1 Kim Clijsters to resume comeback in Miami and Charleston

Former No. 1 Kim Clijsters to resume comeback in Miami and Charleston

The four-time major singles champion will launch her 2021 season at March's Miami Open after accepting a wild card into the 1000-level event. Clijsters will follow that appearance up by making her event debut at Charleston's Volvo Car Open.

Four-time Grand Slam singles champion Kim Clijsters has received a wild card into Miami, which is scheduled to be her first event since the US Open.

The former world No. 1 began her second comeback from retirement a year ago, though has played few events due to the interruptions and restrictions surrounding events during the coronavirus pandemic.

But Clijsters, who stopped playing to bring up her three kids, began considering a return a while ago.

"A few years ago, Martina [Navratilova] said to me, `You shouldn’t be playing with us. You should still be on tour.’ And I was like, 'Hmmm…maybe I should give it a try,'" Clijsters said, speaking to the Miami Herald.

"It would go away when I would go home and be with the kids. I’d talk about it with my husband and he’d laugh. And then he said, 'If you want to really do it, you should start now.'"

Now 37, Clijsters has not played Miami since 2012. She triumphed at the event in 2005 and 2010.

The International Tennis Hall of Fame inductee is aiming "to get to the second week of a Grand Slam," but isn't pressuring herself to achieve her comeback goals."I just want to give it a shot," she said.

Clijsters trained extensively before returning to competition but had few problems fitting it around her schedule at home.

"It didn’t really affect my family because all my training was during school hours. I wasn’t traveling much," she said.

"The kids see me in the morning when they go to school and they see me when they come home from school. Their afternoon snack is prepared."

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But going on tour involves more than it did before, Clijsters added.

"Back then I only worried about myself," she said. "Now it’s the kids, like 'Oh, before I leave, I want to make sure I have the freezer filled with a bunch of food.'"

Clijsters has also accepted a wild card into the Volvo Car Open, where she will make her anticipated Charleston debut. The Belgian was due to play the 500-level tournament a year ago, before organizers canceled the event.