What to expect from Caroline Wozniacki’s return to tennis

(Photo by Robert Prange/Getty Images)
(Photo by Robert Prange/Getty Images) /

Former world number 1 Caroline Wozniacki has announced she is going to return to tennis. But what should we expect from the former Grand Slam champion?

First off, let me just say that Caroline Wozniacki is still only 32 years old. While it seems like she played tennis eons ago and retired nearly as long ago, she is still a bit over three years younger than Novak Djokovic. Wozniacki will turn 33 years old on July 11th, and that still isn’t too old to play competitive tennis.

What might affect Wozniacki the most in her return to competitive tennis – she played in the Legends event in doubles at the French Open with Kim Clijsters in May but that was only two matches and didn’t count in the overall results of the tournament – is simply rust. Even players who have played professional tennis for weeks and months and years at a time struggle with the fitness needed and the speed of the game.

Caroline Wozniacki to return for the US Open

I should also say that I hope Caroline Wozniacki is extremely successful in her return. She always played with class and her brand of tennis was highly entertaining. Plus, she was good enough to be ranked number 1 (two different times) and win the Australian Open in 2018.

But even though I wish her well, she might not be able to have sustained success. She played mostly during the Serena Williams era on the WTA tour and now she’s coming back to the Iga Swiatek era. Neither Swiatek nor Williams would take it easy on a player they likely respect but that is also trying to steal their titles.

Wozniacki also struggled with rheumatoid arthritis in her career and, though I am far from being any kind of doctor, things don’t get easier the older we get (I say this as one who is far beyond Wozniacki’s soon-to-be 33 years). Still, I hope that doesn’t keep her from playing her best and being able to play at all because she was and likely will be a joy to watch.

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Her plan, per her essay in Vogue, is to be ready by the US Open in late August. She will play in the National Bank Open in Montreal in early August before that. She’s worth watching due to her past greatness and her potential to battle new masters like Swiatek.