Watson targets return during clay court season

ESPN staff
April 10, 2013
Heather Watson wants to be back in time for the Aegon Classic in Birmingham © Getty Images

British No. 2 Heather Watson is eyeing a comeback to the WTA circuit at some point during the clay court season after being diagnosed with glandular fever.

The 20-year-old has endured a difficult campaign, suffering consecutive first-round defeats in Indian Wells and Miami, and announced she was going to take some time out in order to recover.

Plans of a quick return were put on hold after Watson was struck with the illness, but with the clay court season underway, Watson is hoping to start playing during this part of the campaign before the grass court swing begins.

"I'm just resting, eating well and looking after myself and trying to get out on the court as quickly as possible," Watson told the Birmingham Mail.

"With glandular fever you don't know, you have just got to see how you feel and when you are 100 per cent again you can get back out to training.

"The key is not to rush because otherwise you could end up making it worse and be out for longer. But I definitely want to be playing the clay court season, that's what I want. I picked up my racket today and it's making me miss practising and playing. I am feeling well-rested but I am not ready to come back just yet. If I am not back by Birmingham I will be distraught.

Watson - who has been displaced as the top British female by Laura Robson - confirmed her participation at the Aegon Classic in Birmingham in June.

"I'm really excited to be coming back to the Aegon Classic this year, it's a really friendly tournament. I always love playing in the UK, especially on the grass and in front of the British fans. They are so enthusiastic about tennis and I feel so supported when I play at home," she said.

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