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After Clijsters, Henin announces return to professional tennis

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-09-23

Following in the steps of compatriot Kim Clijsters, former world number one and seven-time Grand Slam winner Justine Henin (photo) on Tuesday confirmed growing speculation about her return to the WTA tennis circuit by announcing her comeback.

AFP - Former world number one Justine Henin announced her return to the WTA tennis circuit here on Tuesday after a 16-month self-imposed retirement.

The 27-year-old seven-time Grand Slam winner made her announcement on Belgian television and follows that of compatriot Kim Clijsters, who capped her return with victory in the US Open this month.

Talk of a Henin return started last month when it became known that she was back in training to play in exhibition matches in Charleroi, Belgium and Dubai at the end of the year.

Then there was the stunning success of compatriot and old rival Clijsters who won the US Open on September 13 just five weeks after she ended two years of retirement during which time she married and had a baby.

Born in the city of Liege in the French-speaking part of Belgium, Henin burst onto the international scene in 2001 with three WTA tour victories.

Small in stature but gifted with a fabulous one-handed backhand, a great all-round game and a tough mentality, she went on to win seven Grand Slam titles in the next seven years - four French Opens, two US Opens and one Australian Open - as well as two WTA Tour Championships.

She won a total of 41 WTA Tour titles and held the world No.1 spot for 117 non-conscutive weeks, a position she had when she retired on May 14, 2008 citing a succession of injuries and a desire to live a life away from tennis

Date created : 2009-09-22

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