Men's Tennis: Former world no. 1 Marcelo Rios to make comeback after 14 years
Former World no. 1 tennis player and 42-year-old from Chile, Marcelo Rios, announced his plans to make a comeback to the tennis circuit. Rios retired from the sport 14 years ago after having turned pro in 1994.
“I’ve been training with pretty high-level guys,” Rios said during an interview with La Tercera.
"There are no guys that play badly. I’ve been getting tired and I’ve had to lose weight. I have lost 12 stone and almost reached the weight I was when I was a player (on the tour). I’m happy, it’s something different. If I had not felt good or I had not lost weight, I would not have made the decision," he said.
The Chilean holds the distinct record of being the only male player in the Open Era to be ranked no. 1 but never have won a single Grand Slam. He achieved this feat in 1998 when he was at the top of the rankings for six weeks. He reached the Australian Open finals that year as well. Overall, he won 18 titles, including multiple Masters titles.
However, Rios does not plan to return to the top-flight as he has suggested that he will only take part in Challenger tournaments.
“From here to 7th January I can injure myself, because I train a lot, but I would like to do it, to get a wild card, to try it. Imagine winning a challenger at 43 is nice, whatever it may be. I feel qualified to play it and win it. If I did not feel good playing, I would not," he added.
He aims to become the oldest male player to win a trophy in the singles circuit. Ivo Karlovic currently holds that record, having won the Calgary Challenger tournament earlier this year.