U.S. Open Champion Kim Clijsters Puts World Team Tennis on Comeback Schedule
By: Jeremy Richfield
Former world number one Kim Clijsters has decided to hit the tennis courts once more.
The 2005 U.S. Open champion will be playing two matches for the St. Louis Aces including one in King of Prussia against the Freedoms on July 22nd.
“It’s something I’ve always been curious about,” Clijsters said.
Far away from her native country of Belgium, Clijsters has been preparing with her coach at the Atlantic Club in New Jersey for her tennis comeback.
She most recently played in an exhibition at this year’s Wimbledon and leading up to her return to the U.S. Open, World Team Tennis will fit right in.
“Over the last few years, I’ve heard a lot about World Team Tennis and followed quite a few matches,” said Clijsters.
Clijsters says her main focus right now is World Team Tennis and some of the changes in the game like no ad scoring.
“I’ve been playing tennis for 20 some years and the rules have never changed. I think it will be fun to mix it up,” said Clijsters.
She will headline the final match at King of Prussia in a tennis lineup featuring tennis greats like Andre Agassi, John McEnroe as well as Serena and Venus Williams.
Clijsters has been sidelined from tennis because of an injury as well as the task of raising a family.
When asked what part of tennis she has missed the most, she said tennis wasn’t even on her mind.
“To be honest, I didn’t have time to miss tennis. Tennis wasn’t even a priority until I got the invitation from Wimbledon to play. After a couple weeks that feeling came back, said Clijsters.”
That feeling to be back out on the tennis court playing matches is something she seems to be very excited about.
“I really enjoy and really get into motivating doubles partners and people on the sidelines. When you see someone like Billy Jean King with so much passion, it really rubs off on you,” said Clijsters.
Clijsters will be traveling with her husband and daughter during her World Team Tennis matches as well as tune up tournaments leading up to the U.S Open.
“I never got to defend my title. I’m really happy that I’m able to go back,” said Clijsters.
However, before she will have the chance to defend her U.S. Open title, Clijsters will be making a stop in King of Prussia to play the Freedoms.
When asked about her motivation to play in World Team Tennis, Clijsters responded like a true competitor.
“I’m looking to play matches. The atmosphere, the tension and the pressure and the nerves are there,” said Clijsters, “I’m even more excited to just to be a part of the tennis world. It’s a place I haven’t been to in a couple of years now.”