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TENNIS

Swedish tennis star hopes for comeback

Robin Söderling, the former world number four sidelined by illness for nearly two years, has said that he still hopes to return to the tennis circuit.

Swedish tennis star hopes for comeback

“I will come back when I feel 100 percent but I don’t know when. That’s how it is, unfortunately,” Söderling told tabloid Aftonbladet.

Söderling – the only man to have beaten Spain’s eight-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal on the clay at Roland Garros – has not played in competition since the Swedish Open tournament in July 2011.

Since then he has been hit by a series of health problems, including glandular fever, which is still affecting him.

The 28-year-old, who turned professional in 2001, told Aftonbladet that he was not yet fit enough to endure the rigours of competition tennis at the highest level.

“It’s hard to recover at a snail’s pace,” he explained.

“In the beginning it was difficult. When I went to bed every night, I told myself: perhaps I’ll be better tomorrow. That lasted a week, a month… I got another perspective on the passage of time.”

The Swede said he has made enough money during his career so far not to have to worry about working again.

According to the atpworldtour.com website, Söderling has won more than $10.4 million in prize money in singles and doubles.

“It’s an extraordinary feeling to be able to choose what you do, rather than having to do it. I’ve been spoiled,” he said.

AFP/The Local/nr Follow The Local on Twitter

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SPORT

Björn Borg’s son Leo set to make his Wimbledon debut

Four decades after Swedish tennis legend Björn Borg won a fifth consecutive Wimbledon title, his 16-year-old son Leo Borg is reportedly set to make his debut at the tournament.

Björn Borg's son Leo set to make his Wimbledon debut
Leo Borg's Wimbledon debut is yet to be officially confirmed. Photo: Hanna Franzén/TT

According to reports in British tabloid The Sun and Swedish tabloid Expressen, Borg will be awarded a wildcard to play in the Wimbledon junior event.

“Leo is very grateful about getting a wildcard for the qualifiers to junior Wimbledon,” Björn Borg told Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet.

“It will be an incredible experience and useful practice for the future,” he added.

A spokeswoman for the Wimbledon tournament did not want to confirm the decision, only saying that wildcard announcements and the main draw for the Juniors tournament would be made next week.

If confirmed, Leo Borg’s Wimbledon debut comes 39 years after Björn Borg defeated American rival John McEnroe, winning him his fifth consecutive Wimbledon title.

The iconic match has been called one of the greatest matches of all time and the story was adapted for the screen in the 2017 feature film Borg vs McEnroe, where Leo, bearing a striking resemblance to his fatther, played a younger version of Björn Borg.

During the 1970s and early 1980s Björn Borg won a total of 11 Grand Slam titles, five Wimbledons and six French Opens.


Björn Borg after winning his fifth consecutive Wimbledon title in 1980. Photo: Scanpix/TT

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