Jelena Jankovic she was one of the best players of her generation. His record was brilliant, his powerful game and his character on the court made him an opponent to fear. At a time when racing stretches to previously unsuspected limits, the Serbian was nevertheless hit by several injuries that took her off the track. Specific, a back operation in 2017 would cut its activity … until now.

Jelena has never said that her brilliant career has officially come to an end. Their titles and merits are still there, despite the fact that the ranking does not exist. One of them stands out above all: being the first player in finishing the year like number one without having won any Grand Slam before. 17 weeks The Belgrade tennis player was at the top of the mountain, watching the others from above. Now at 35, maybe tennis will knock on her door again.

After winning alongside Novak Djokovic in the duel that opened the competition of Adria Tour Olga Danilovic and Nenad Zimonjic 7-6 (6), the Serbian tennis player spoke at Eurosport and gave her feelings about returning to play in a relatively competitive environment. Yes, the duel was full of laughter, hugs and moments and points for the show, but it is still a set played at a high level, in front of an almost crowded stands and with the expectation generated that this would be the first meeting of the exhibition. which will fill the press with headlines for the next few weeks.

“This is the first time I have picked up a tennis racket in a long time and I was so excited like a child in a candy store“Jankovic dropped, a few words indicating that this adrenaline rush of competing again, and more at home, was a sign that the tennis gate will never be completely closed.” It felt like the first time I played. The injury that forced me to move away not only weakened my tennis career, it was so bad he did not let me walk or sleep properly. “Given this, his absence from the circuit is more than justified.

Now, luckily, the reality is quite different from that after the 2017 Us Open, where a loss to Petra Kvitova it would be his last professional game. “I have made a full recovery, but I don’t know if this is a turn. The door is open, of course. Officially I have never retired, but now I am living a very different life,” said Jelena, who seems to make it clear that, if well tennis is always present in the background of your mind, his life flows down a different path to that of the competition today.

“The match was incredible, but getting back to the circuit seriously is a very different matter and a meticulous and careful process,” Jankovic concluded. Perhaps he can draw inspiration from other great laps in the competition, like the one one of his generational partners, Kim Clijsters, was trying. In the face of the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, perhaps this Adria Tour will serve Jankovic to gather strength and give that little voice that has more strength in its head than it currently has. Meanwhile, as she says, the tennis door will always be open. And we are not going to close it.