Farewell, my champion!
Full name: Kim Antoine Lode Clijsters
Birthdate: 8th June, 1983
Birthplace: Blizen, Belgium
Residence: Bree, Belgium
Married to: Brian Lynch, USA basketballer
Children: Daughter, Jada age 4
Turned pro: 17th August, 1997, age 14 (WOW!)
Plays: Right handed, two handed backhand
Career prize money: $22,442,340
Career titles: 41 titles
Grand Slam history: 4 Grand slams, 3 US Opens, 2005, 2009, 2010. 1 Australian Open, 2011.
Retired: 2nd September, 2012
Career record: 523 wins – 127 losses
Career high singles ranking: No.1 11th August 2003, 20 weeks.
Career high doubles ranking: No.1 4th August 2003, 4 weeks.
Favourite surface: Plexicushion, DecoTurf.
You don’t have to love tennis to love Kim Clijsters, what’s not to love, she’s all class on and off the court
September, 2012, Kim Clijsters played her last match on the WTA Tour, the US Open. Kim easily won her first round match against Victoria Duval from the USA, 6-3, 6-1. But, the second round was a whole different story. Kim was up against Australian born, Laura Robson, who now plays for the UK. It would prove to be an amazing match that would come down to the wire. Kim would stun her with one of her unbelievable forehands, but the left-handed, Robson, did just the same. Groundstroke for groundstroke, volley for volley, it sure was a nailbiting match. (One that made me late for school that day) Robson, was the victor, and leaving poor Kimmy defeated in her last WTA event, 7-6, 7-6.
Although, maybe it’s not all over yet. Kim has a special farewell match on the 12th of December, against Venus Williams in Belgium. This is called ‘Kim’s thankyou games’. It’s a night to be filled with music, giveaways for everyone in the audience, and of course, tennis.
My memories of Kim will stay forever and ever, traveling with me wherever I go. I still remember watching her in the 2012 Aussie Open, where I was lucky enough to get my tennis ball signed by her. It holds pride of place in my room. When I watched Kim play, I am overwhelmed with her power and determination and her wide split shots always have me pumping my fists. Kim has given me more than just great tennis to watch. She has inspired me to dream big, never give in and above all, be strong and confident on and off the court.
The end of a legends era, and the beginning of a new chapter, good luck, my champion!
Some photos are from Flickr CC, others are my own.