Roger Federer says he never seriously considered retirement in his 14 months away from tennis, and is returning as he feels “the story’s not over yet”.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion is competing at this week’s Qatar Open.
It will be his first tour appearance since losing to Novak Djokovic in last year’s Australian Open semi-finals.
“I know it’s on the rare side for almost a 40-year-old to come back after a year being out. What’s important is I’m injury and pain-free,” he said.
“The pain is completely under control.”
The 39-year-old has a bye into the second round in Doha, where he will play either Britain’s Dan Evans or Jeremy Chardy of France.
“I know I need to go back to training after here again, so from this standpoint it’s just about building up to being stronger, better, fitter, faster and all that stuff,” he added.
“I hope then by Wimbledon I’m going to be 100%, and that’s when…