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The Comeback Conundrum, Starring Del Potro, Tsonga and Sharapova

So a lot of our favorite players have lost in the past couple of days, huh, tennis fans?

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Maria Sharapova and Juan Martin del Potro have all been early-round casualties the past couple of days in Asia. For Tsonga, it's his first event in months, while del Potro is playing his second, both returning after injury-driven breaks. Sharapova's shoulder woes almost seem like an eon ago as she's been out there regularly competing. I'm lumping all three of them together, though, because while I'm a huge fan of all three, I just don't know why they made their comebacks when they did.

I've stated before how <a href="http://www.tennistalkanyone.com/2009/05/shouldering-burden.html">I didn't get Sharapova's return to action last year on clay</a>, the toughest surface for her to play on. I think she's been a shell of herself ever since her return, even though I'm always hoping otherwise. With del Potro and Tsonga, why not wait until next year to get back out there? If Tsonga's trying to build up points to make the year-end championships, that wouldn't be a great move, playing in frantic mode and entering every tournament, increasing the odds of injury for an already very-injury-prone player.

As for del Potro, the end of the year event is light years away. Getting in (maybe) six matches before the season shuts down seems like a big gamble to me coming off a major injury.

I know there's a lot of thought otherwise out there on players' returning from injury, and it's good that these athletes want to get back out there. But tennis' offseason is so brief, why not use every opportunity to recover? And these three players that I mentioned are all young and successful, and have their whole careers ahead of them. I'm just asking for a little scheduling consideration to rest my nerves!

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