Wimbledon dream prompts Henin return


Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:49

The 27-year-old former world number one quit the sport in May 2008 but announced her return on Tuesday, just over a week after fellow Belgian Kim Clijsters capped her retirement U-turn with a second US Open title, and Henin believed Clijsters’ decision played a small part in her own choice to return to the sport but claims winning Wimbledon is her driving factor.

“Maybe subconsciously Kim’s return influenced me,” Henin told RTL-TVI. “I have a lot of admiration and respect for what she has done. But it wasn’t the determinant factor. Roger Federer’s victory at Roland Garros spoke to me much more because it made me think of a lot of things in relation to Wimbledon.”

She added: “I felt a lack and maybe for the first time I really felt that Wimbledon was missing from my list of trophies.

“Winning Wimbledon is a dream. It’s more than an aim, it’s really a dream.

“I’m giving myself the means to look to achieve great things but will that be enough to win Wimbledon?

“At the moment I don’t have the answer to that. I know I’m going to work for it though.”

Henin shocked the world of tennis when she “definitively” quit the sport at the age of just 25 and surprised them again with Tuesday’s decision, but she insists she needed the break and has no regrets.

“I know it was surprising for someone so young to put a stop to their sporting career but you have to know that I was tired and didn’t have any strength left,” said Henin.

“Above all I had a deep need to feel myself again, to prove to myself that I was capable of existing other than through the world of tennis. I wanted to have a more normal life, a calmer one.”


Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.