Melbourne, Australia, 18 February 2021 | Leigh Rogers

Sam Stosur is enjoying being back on court and it is reflecting in her results.

The 36-year-old, who took a 10-month break from the tour last year, has progressed to the Australian Open 2021 mixed doubles semifinals alongside fellow Aussie Matt Ebden.

Stosur, who is contesting her 19th Australian Open, is now two wins away from claiming an eighth career Grand Slam title. She is hoping to secure her second Australian Open mixed doubles title and first in 16 years, having won her first with Aussie Scott Draper in 2005.

These numbers highlight Stosur’s incredible longevity and as she looks to add to her remarkable record, retirement is not on her mind at all.

“I hear other people, other players who have retired, a lot of them just know when it’s time. There’s been some matches where I’m like, ‘Oh, geez, do I want to do that again?’ Then you have a day like today, playing mixed. It’s like, ‘Yeah, absolutely I want to do it again’,” said Stosur after her mixed doubles quarterfinal win today.

“I’d like to still see out at least this year. I haven’t got any plans to stop yet. Obviously with COVID and all of that, it makes things really difficult. I’m playing, kind of taking it week by week and just enjoying every chance that I get to step out on court at the moment.”

A former world No.1 doubles player, Stosur is currently ranked No.33. Her singles ranking is No.112.

Stosur, who also made the second round in singles at this year’s Australian Open, is yet to decide her schedule for 2021. She had hoped to travel on tour with partner Liz and daughter Evie, who was born in June, but is reassessing what is possible amid the global COVID-19 pandemic.

“It certainly makes things a whole lot more difficult. The plan was to travel all together this year and do that as much as what we could,” Stosur said.

The two-week mandatory quarantine requirement when returning to Australia has thwarted original plans to make several small international trips throughout the season.

“Obviously now that’s all out the window. I think it’s going to be pretty hard for them to travel with me,” Stosur admitted.

“I think for all the Australians, actually everyone that I’ve spoken to, none of us really know what kind of schedule we’re playing yet because once you go, you’re kind of gone for the year. I’m not in a position to do that, pack my bags next week and not come home until after the US Open (in September). That’s not for me any more. I’m still kind of working it out. Chances are I’m not probably going to go anywhere until the clay season (which begins in April).”

For now, Stosur’s immediate focus is on tomorrow’s mixed doubles semifinal against Brit Joe Salisbury and American Desirae Krawczyk.

Victory would propel Stosur into a 14th career Grand Slam final, providing another major reason why it’s not her time to bid farewell to professional tennis just yet.