No plans to retire, says evergreen Tammy
Veteran Thai tennis star Tamarine Tanasugarn has denied rumours that she is ready to hang up her racquet, saying she is back on tour again and targeting grass tournaments.
Injuries kept the former top 10 player out of action at the start of the year, which prompted speculation that the 171st ranked player was contemplating retirement.
However, Tammy, who will turn 35 next week, played down the gossip by saying she was still enjoying the game and would not throw in the towel as long as she was still enjoying tennis.
"I'm still having fun with my work, training and taking on the challenge from the player on the other side of the net. Each day, each match is different and I'm still curious to know if I can still beat these players," said Tammy, who has lost both her WTA qualifying matches this year.
"I still believe I can match the young girls. My job is to go out there and try my best. But if things don't go my way, I have to accept the way they do go," added the Thai, who peaked at No 19 in the world in 2002.
She leaves Bangkok tonight for two clay court events, in Brussels then Paris for the French Open, where she is entered in the doubles. But her big hopes are for the upcoming season on grass, her favourite surface.
Of her four singles title wins on the WTA Tour, two have been on grass - in 's-Hertogenbosch in 2008 and 2009 - while she became the first and so far only Thai to reach a grand slam quarter-finals at Wimbledon in 2008.
Despite her eagerness to continue in tennis, Tammy says she has to be selective over her singles schedule these days.
"I will play singles only at big tournaments and on my favourite surfaces. Luckily, I don't have a lot of points to defend this year and I hope I can reach the later stages of the two events on grass I will enter. The deeper the better," said Tammy, referring to lawn events in Birmingham and Wimbledon.
Also making demands on her schedule is her Lawn Tennis Association of Thailand commission, alongside former player Napaporn Tongsalee, to supervise a development project for under-16 players.
"I am helping design the training and competition programme for these kids. It's time for the next generation of Thai players to follow in my footsteps."