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Former Australian Open semifinalist makes a comeback after a long absence!
The 26-year-old Hyeon Chung will compete in his first singles match since Roland Garros 2020 at the Seoul Open Challenger the following week. In January 2021, Hyeon got another minor back procedure in the hopes of having a fresh start at the domestic competition after missing three years of participation.
In 2015, Hyeon, then a youngster, finished barely outside the top-50 with 12 ATP victories. Due to injuries, he lost ground a year later and slid out of the top 100. Chung performed well on clay in 2017 and, by the summer, had climbed back into the top 50, setting his sights on even greater objectives.
With the ATP Next Gen Finals victory, Hyeon ended the year on a high note. The Korean entered the Australian Open semifinals after a flawless start to the 2018 campaign. Chung defeated Novak Djokovic, Alexander Zverev, and Daniil Medvedev before quitting against Roger Federer in the semifinals due to a massive blister.
After Roland Garros 2020, Hyeon Chung will compete in his first singles tournament.
Hyeon made it into the top 20, but he was unable to maintain that pace for the remainder of the year. Due to a lower leg injury, the Korean missed practically the whole clay and grass season.
Chung only played in Munich and Madrid before making a gradual comeback in Atlanta at the end of July, where he struggled to get into winning form. The results were no longer there, but the ranking was! By the end of the season, Hyeon had only won nine games, and the season had ended sooner than anticipated because of blisters on his right foot.
The Korean spent the off-season in Thailand working on physical fitness and building tools to play more aggressively in 2019 and prevent injuries. As a result of those Australian Open points, the Korean is still rated in the top-25. Hyeon also experienced back discomfort for months while researching answers for his blister problems.
Chung played just five matches in 2019 and was off the court from February to August, yet he was powerless to stop them. The Korean plummeted out of the top-150 for the first time since February 2015 with just 45 points added in the first five months.
After winning the return event in Chengdu, his standing somewhat improved. Additionally, Chung made it to the third round of the US Open and the quarterfinal of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics while being outside the top-100.
Hyeon, however, was unable to play at his peak level and dropped all four Challenger games between March and September. Chung missed the remainder of the season after failing to qualify for Roland Garros at the end of September. Hyeon had surgery in the start of 2021, and he hasn’t played since, hoping to get back to practicing next week.