Tennis-Thiem to return at claycourt Challenger event in Spain

French Open
FILE PHOTO: Tennis - French Open - Roland Garros, Paris, France - May 30, 2021 Austria's Dominic Thiem in action with during his first round match against Spain's Pablo Andujar REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

March 25, 2022

(Reuters) – Former U.S. Open champion Dominic Thiem said he will make his return from a wrist injury at the ATP Challenger Tour claycourt event in Marbella, Spain which begins on Sunday.

Thiem has not played since suffering the injury at the 2021 Mallorca Open and the 28-year-old, who has slipped to 50th in the world rankings, was unable to defend his U.S. Open crown last year.

He has accepted a wildcard for the Andalucia Open in Marbella, where three-times major champion Stan Wawrinka will also make his comeback from injury.

“I want to start getting contact with the competition after all these months and I believe this is the right way to start,” Thiem said on Instagram on Thursday.

“It’s been a very, very tough period for me and to go back to competition is what I need … I know this will be a slow process of getting back to the top level, but I am ready to work hard and start humble.”

The Austrian had delayed his comeback after withdrawing from tournaments in Argentina, Brazil, Chile as well as ATP Masters 1000 events in Indian Wells and Miami.

(Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)