Simona Halep says she is determined to see “how good” she can still be and how much she can "still win" as she looks to bounce back from an injury-riddled season.
Former world No 1 Halep had a 24-10 record in singles in 2021 as she struggled to find her best form.
A calf injury saw her miss the French Open, Wimbledon and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, and her top-10 streak of 373 weeks – the eighth longest in WTA Tour history – came to an end in August.
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Halep, 30, also split with long-time coach Darren Cahill last year, but is feeling revitalised ahead of the new season.
“I thought about it being close to the end, but honestly after this pre-season and how I feel right now at the tournament, I feel like I have a few more years to play,” she told the WTA.
“My husband is supporting me in that direction, my family as well. My team says I'm still good enough to go there and compete, so I'm not thinking about retirement yet. I just want to enjoy and give my best because I know there is another chance.”
After returning to action in the US Open, Halep had a positive finish to 2021 as she made the final of the Transylvania Open in her home country of Romania and semi-finals of the Upper Austria Ladies in Linz.
Now ranked 20 in the world, she says her main target for the year ahead is to get back into the top 10.
“This is the main goal and this is actually the only one goal. But everything that comes along with it is a bonus and we will see. But the focus is to get back to the top 10.”
As for motivation, the two-time Grand Slam champion added: “To see how good I can still be, to see how much I can still win. I'm motivated to just try my best every day. I still enjoy tennis and the competition.
“I still want more and more from myself. I have a good team, I have nice people around. This is my motivation. I don't have one thing as a motivation, like a tournament or a result.”
Halep is set to start her season as the second seed in the Melbourne Summer Set 1.
She will face a qualifier in her opening match and says she is feeling healthy after suffering a knee injury that forced her to withdraw from her last event of 2021 in Linz.

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“I felt very positive after Linz, even if I had to retire because of the knee. I felt I was there, I'm still there, I just had to work more physically because during the year I was not able to work that much because of the injury that I had.
“Here I am and I'm very positive with what I've done and, honestly, confident for what is coming.”
Halep has been training with world No 1 Ashleigh Barty ahead of the 2022 Australian Open. She has also added former coach Adrian Marcu to her team to help replace Cahill.
“It’s been a great relationship and he’s still my friend and we are friends,” Halep said of Cahill.
“He was kind of my family, so I cannot just call him a coach. He taught me many things outside the court; how to live easier, how to live more relaxed, like all the Australians do.
“I won the Grand Slam that I really wanted and I jumped to the next level with his help, so always I will be very thankful to him. And I heard he’s around, so I can’t wait to see him.
“The decision was from both sides and there was probably too much time together as the coach and the player, and sometimes you have to break that – but we are in a good connection still.”
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