Elina Svitolina draws Yulia Putintseva in first match back

Svitolina's comeback starts on the clay courts of Charleston.

by Dzevad Mesic
Elina Svitolina draws Yulia Putintseva in first match back

Former world No 3 Elina Svitolina has been drawn to face Yulia Putintseva in the Charleston first round. Svitolina, 28, is set to play her first tournament since the 2022 Miami Open. Svitolina, who exited the top-1000 after being out for 12 months, received a main draw wildcard from the Charleston organizers.

In her first match back, Svitolina is set to play against a very familiar opponent - Putintseva. When Svitolina and Putintseva meet, it will be their eighth meeting. Putintseva defeated Svitolina when they met in Dubai 11 years ago.

Since then, Svitolina has won six consecutive matches against Putintseva.

Svitolina has 'no expectations' at the start of her comeback

Svitolina, who gave birth to a baby girl in October, is set to play her first tournament in a year.

Svitolina was out for a really long period and for now her main priority is to find some game and rhythm. "At the moment, my goal is to get in a game and tournament shape, because it's a little different. It's very important to focus properly, to get out of the tough matches that I'm sure I'm going to have ahead of me.

It will take some time to be 100% fit. I have no expectations of myself. It is important for me to set short-term tasks that I can achieve within a month, two at most. Yes, there are goals that I would like to achieve by the end of my career.

They are always somewhere on my mind. But right now it's important for me to set these small tasks and move forward to build back my form, find my game, be physically fit and strong. That's important for me at the moment. To try to come closer to my game with each practice, each match. I was motivated and I'm motivated for 100%, so we will see," Svitolina told BTU.

Elina Svitolina Yulia Putintseva