Latvian player Anastasija Sevastova had announced her retirement from the game after injuries in May 2013. She won the Estoril title in 2010 and reached the fourth round of the Australian Open in 2011, peaking at no. 36 in the rankings. But now, she has announced her return to competitive tennis after 19 months of retirement. EMPIRE Women’s Indoor 2015 (Prize Money 10,000 USD, hard) will be her second tournament this year and she has received the wild card for the women's event. She won the EMPIRE Trnava Cup tournament in 2012 so she has great memories of our club. You can read more about it in our interview with Anastasija Sevastova.

You are back, great news! Why have you decided to restart your tennis career?
"During the first year off tennis I had not thought of restarting my career. But my injuries and health improved a lot during the last year as I was taking more intense care of me. So after considering everything I wanted to try again. You only live once ;)."

We would like to know more about your health condition. How is your elbow injury and other problems?
"Well, my back injury is better, but I really have to take care and do exercises, undergo massages and stretch. If I don't do it I have pain. But everything is under control right now. Elbow injury, or rather arm muscle, needs the same exercises and taking care."

How did you spend more than a year without tennis? It had to be tough, what made your days better?
"At first, it was tough because tennis was all I had. But the decision was right at the time, so I lived a normal life. I started studying a bit, coaching some tennis classes, meeting my friends. Now I can say that tennis is not everything in my life and there are other, more significant things than that."

Where do you live and who is your coach?
"I'm residing in Vienna and I practice and instruct tennis trainings in Better Tennis Academy in Vienna. My coach there is Ronny Schmidt."

Let's remember your nice triumph in Trnava in 2012. You won the EMPIRE Trnava Cup, what are your memories of that?
"Well, I remember that I was watching matches from my hotel room and that the club was really amazing with all the facilities. Food in the restaurant was delicious. And it happened only once in my entire career that I won a tournament without playing the final match. My opponent retired before the match, so I had to play exhibition.

Was it a surprise for you that you received a wild card to the main draw from the EMPIRE Women’s Indoor organizers?
"Yes, it was a nice surprise. I wrote on Tuesday and had my answer right away. I didn't expect WC for the main draw, maybe just for the qualifying. I was very grateful to the tournament director."

You have started the season very well and you won singles and doubles titles in Sharm El Sheikh. How tough was your comeback? You played very well, without losing a set...
"It was exciting to being back on court again. For sure I was quite nervous in the first match, but then I enjoyed every next minute."

What are your memories of your win in Estoril 2010? Is this feeling of triumph one of the reasons why you are back in action?
"I remember that everything happened so quickly and suddenly- Suddenly, I was standing there with the trophy. I think by then I had not appreciated this achievement that much, so it's hard for me to say. Everybody loves winning. Right now I want to enjoy every minute on the court, do my best and I see how it goes."


Sevastova with the EMPIRE Trnava Cup singles trophy in 2012:

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Sevastova after recent doubles win in Egypt (source Facebook):




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