Due to her ankle injury, Simona Halep had to miss the Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the Tokyo Olympics. The long period of inactivity cost the Romanian champion the top 10, that top 10 that she hasn't left since 27 January 2014.
After the long stop, Halep will finally come back to the court at the WTA in Montreal, where she was drawn in the lower part of the board together with Bianca Andreescu, Ons Jabeur, Elina Svitolina, Petra Kvitova and Cori Gauff.
In the press conference interview Halep said: "I'm still far from my best level. I don't expect big things from this tournament. I've spent the last three months at home and spent my time doing things that we tennis players aren't used to doing.
Simona Halep: "I'm still far from my best level"
I just wanted to recover physically. I am very excited about my return and I hope to be able to win as many starts as possible. I really like the playing conditions here in Canada.
I have many good memories and I have won many good games. Every time I come I feel at home. I like the court, I like the warmth of the spectators. It really is a special place for me. Top ten lost after 373 consecutive weeks? I am very proud to have been among the top ten players in the world for so long.
Unfortunately, the injury prevented me from staying there and doing my best. I have not been able to play in the last three months and many players have won many tournaments and earned a lot of points. Now I have to work to try and get back to those positions.
I take it as a real challenge. I no longer feel the pressure I had many years ago. If I manage to get good results in the next tournaments it will only be a matter of time before I reach certain positions again.." The former world number one will challenge the winner of the first round match between Jil Teichmann and Danielle Collin in her first roud.