Tennis

On This Day In 2009, March 26: Kim Clijsters Comes Out Of Retirement

Kim Clijsters, a former world number one, then aged 25, said she would make her grand slam comeback at the US Open

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Mehdi Taamallah/PA
Kim Clijsters won the US Open in 2010 after stepping out of retirement the previous year. Photo: Mehdi Taamallah/PA
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Kim Clijsters announced she would come out of retirement on this day in 2009. (More Tennis News)

The former world number one, then aged 25, said she would make her grand slam comeback at the US Open.

Clijsters had retired in May 2007 and became a mother the following year.

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“My comeback will be in the United States,” said Clijsters. “I won’t go to these tournaments in the same way I go on holiday.

“I don’t plan to go there as a tourist and come back home after one or two rounds.”

The Belgian was true to her word, swiftly reclaiming the US Open title she had first won in 2005 by defeating Caroline Wozniacki.

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Clijsters then successfully defended the title in 2010, before adding an Australian Open victory to her CV the following year.She won a career total of four grand slam singles titles – her first US Open triumph was in 2005 – and reached the singles semi-finals at both Wimbledon and the French Open twice.

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She won a career total of four grand slam singles titles – her first US Open triumph was in 2005 – and reached the singles semi-finals at both Wimbledon and the French Open twice.

A second retirement was announced in 2012, this time owing to family commitments as Clijsters did not wish to continue to tour while her daughter started school.

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But, after a seven-year hiatus and the birth of her two sons, Clijsters began training in early 2019 and announced the following year she would make a second career comeback at the age of 36.

However, her return lasted just five matches before she retired for a third time in 2022.

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