Sep/19

12

Kim Clijsters To Resume Her Hall of Fame Career

Hall of Fame champion Kim Clijsters wants to compete again.

The 36 year old from Belgium announced this week that she will make a comeback in 2020. Mother to Jada (born in 2008), Jack (2013) and Blake (2016) and husband to former Villanova basketball player Brian Lynch, Clijsters lost her first four major finals but then won her next four.

She won the US Open in 2005 (defeating Mary Pierce 63 61), 2009 (Caro Wozniacki 76 63) and 2010 (Vera Zvonareva 62 61). Her final Grand Slam win was in Australia in 2011 where she beat Li Na 36 63 63.

Clijsters also won two doubles majors – 2003 French Open and Wimbledon with Ai Sugiyama. She also contested the Wimbledon 2000 mixed doubles final with Lleyton Hewitt, losing to Don Johnson and Kim Po 64 76.

Overall, Clijsters won 41 singles titles and 523 singles matches and over $24 million in prize money. In 2003 she was no. 1 ranked in both singles and doubles.

This will be Kim’s second pro comeback. She originally retired at just 24 in 2007 because of injuries.

“Aussie Kim’s” last pro matches were at the 2012 US Open where she defeated Vicky Duval before losing to Laura Robson. In mixed doubles, she and Bob Bryan lost in the second round to eventual champions Bruno Saores and Ekatarina Makarova.

Since her official retirement in 2012, Clijsters and her husband and three children have split time in Bree, Belgium and Belmar, NJ at the Jersey Shore, the hometown of her husband.

She will turn 37 in June of 2020.

Clijsters has a 2-7 career record vs Serena Williams. Williams will turn 38 later this month.

92 comments

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 9:29 am

    LTA and UK tennis post Murray: much as I like Edmund, time to admit the LTA and UK should just fund players to train in Spain. By now we should see some players inspired by Murray and there’s Edmund.

    Murray is a unicorn.

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 9:30 am

    Bianca has had a lot of fun experiences over the last few days. She said some highlights were travelling by private jet back to Toronto, appearing on Jimmy Fallon, and getting messages from LeBron James and, finally, Drake.

    She had a whirlwind of media obligations on Wednesday, starting with a big press conference.

    She has one more event before she heads to Montreal to resume her normal training. The City of Mississauga, where she was born, will host a big rally for her on Saturday, where she will receive the keys to the city and they will unveil the street sign, “Andreescu Way.”

    But her main focus is on what she wants to accomplish in tennis.

    “I think that’s what really gets me going, is just to create history and win as many Grand Slams as possible, and become No. 1 in the world,” she said. “Like my mom always says to me, ‘Don’t forget who you are, and dream big to get big,’ and I think I’ve been doing that for a pretty long time now.” (National Post)

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 9:34 am

    Andreescu…she is like another Serena as media darling. Hope she’s practicing though… everyone’s coach is running the tape and the invisible X on Andreescu back has grown.

    Life comes at ya quick.

    Let’s see how she handles indoors. Her serve will work but she’s not going to have the advantage of more time.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 9:35 am

    Major respect for the professionalism and focus and dedication of Louis Borfiga. Unlike in another tennis nation where the player development head wastes time sending hounding emails to players and creating unnecessary distracting controversy out of nothing, such as Ryan Harrison saying Tiafoe thinks he’s Lebron James or Harrison tweeting a joke about Young falsifying racism accusations like Smollet did. No wonder Canada is on top of the food chain right now in player development. And no wonder Harrison and Young’s careers have nosedived since this player development head’s questionable actions.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 9:39 am

    Translating that Andreescu quote: “We have only just begun. My best tennis is coming. If you think how I beat Serena at US Open was impressive you ain’t seen nothing yet. Just wait and see. Me, Sylvain and Coco…Here we come baby!”

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 9:40 am

    Because of the Canadian winters, our players get a lot of experience playing indoors, unless they go to Florida at an early age. I don’t think that will be a problem for Bianca.

    Of course the other players and their coaches will be studying her game and will be gunning for her. But it won’t be that easy to solve the Bianca puzzle, because she has so many different weapons. if a player can beat her by playing one style, Bianca has other options to go to.

    Obviously she won’t continue to win everything is sight, but I think she will have good results in her sophomore year.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 9:43 am

    Maybe no player is immune to lack of practice and the reappearance of a wobbly serve. We’ve seen this for many decades in the sport. There is no rare special player that can win big tournaments for that long without keeping their game up and minding their turf.

    Graf was a workhorse. She was a phenomenal athlete who kept her risks low, which meant train like a super athlete.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 9:45 am

    Bianca’s weapons are only good when sharp. You can’t media interview your way to another slam. The tour is too competitive. Halep brought Cahill back for all we know in order to develop a strategy for Bencic and for Andreescu and anyone else on the horizon.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 9:45 am

    Maybe Halep more with it than we think.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 9:48 am

    A Tennis Canada junior coach who travels with juniors to ITFs told me they do take top juniors to train in Florida for training camps, so they have that covered Hartt, they are not stuck over training indoors in your Canadian winters. They work in Florida too. Borfiga one step ahead of you Hartt 🙂

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 9:50 am

    Here’s another way to put it: look at Osaka’s example. She was top of the world and stayed there for five months. She fires a coach and months later she’s noticeably worse. This isn’t because she’s Osaka – this is because this is normal! Circumstances change. Andreescu becomes a wealthy girl. Her parents may want a new house. Suddenly she’s giving too much time to endorsers…

    All this has happened so many times to so many players. Her best bet? Take it easy and get her schedule squared away, and keep working her game so it peaks when you need it. Keep a stable team.

    Maybe even figure out how to play on Australia’s courts, if Canada has that surface. I don’t know. What balls they use. This is all stuff Federer etc does.

  • catherine · September 13, 2019 at 9:57 am

    Andrew – Cahill was always coming back. I still think it was a bit of a swiz to pretend that she was looking for other coaches when all the time she was just stalling. I hope her present/just past coach got a good payoff.

    Simona won Wimbledon without Cahill. Or did she ?

    Steffi was injured/ill so often that most of her training was done on the court. Her mobility was something she was born with.

  • catherine · September 13, 2019 at 10:02 am

    Out of Osaka (tournament) Andreescu, Bencic, Vondrousova, all with injuries. How did Bianca pick up a rght leg injury ? Running after Coco ?

    Good opportunity for Kerber to win a match or two. She always plays Japan.

  • catherine · September 13, 2019 at 10:04 am

    Hong Kong Open postponed, not surprisingly.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 10:09 am

    Enjoy. Nice piece today from Forbes, the unlikeliest article in Forbes of all time, on Andreescu. Not to be negative but…and I like Andreescu!

    One-Slam Wonders Since 2000
    Anastasia Myskina (2004 French Open)
    Ana Ivanovic (2008 French Open)
    Francesca Schiavone (2010 French Open)
    Samantha Stosur (2011 U.S. Open)
    Marion Bartoli (2013 Wimbledon)
    Flavia Pennetta (2015 U.S. Open)
    Jelena Ostapenko (2017 French Open)
    Sloane Stephens (2017 U.S. Open)
    Caroline Wozniacki (2018 Aussie Open)
    Ashleigh Barty (2019 French Open)

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 10:16 am

    Andrew, you sound as though Bianca won’t be working hard. She said she will be on the practice courts today and then will go to Montreal at the beginning of the week to resume her regular training. She has had less than 1 week off.

    Catherine, I did not know that was the excuse they used to pull out of the next 2 tourneys. Because the players have to commit so early I think they should be able to withdraw from a tourney, say at least 1 week before it begins. It is sad they have to come up with these phony excuses.

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 10:31 am

    Scoop, Nathalie Tauziat was the coach for Canada’s Fed Cup team earlier in the season, and I imagine she still is. Former player Heidi El Tabakh is the captain.

    Tauziat coached Genie when Bouchard was a junior, and then Bianca when the youngster was 14-15. I am not sure just when the coaching relationship ended, but when Bianca went to the National Training Centre in Montreal she would not have had an individual coach. So their partnership was some time ago. But I agree that Tauziat should be acknowledged as an important part of Bianca’s development.

    It sound like Tauziat loves coaching. This is from an earlier Tennis Canada post:
    “I always wanted to coach even when I was a player. I always liked to be around the kids. I have a tennis club in France and when I still playing, when I was home and had time I tried to help the teacher and be with the kids. I always said after my career I would like to transfer my experience to the kids. I always loved to coach and tennis is my passion so I stayed in tennis.”

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 10:32 am

    Andrew, yes, when a player gets to the top, life changes in so many ways we can’t even imagine. One ex agent even told me a current top 50 player he managed was having his money stolen by his … mother. To the tune of five figures. Mo Money Mo Problems as Biggie Smalls rapped about. Or was that Diddy?

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 10:40 am

    Hartt, it seems Andreescu and most other female players prefer to have a male coach than a woman. Billie Jean King may not like this truth but it’s reality. Equality in hiring by female WTA players is heavily imbalanced for male coaches. The interesting this is it’s their choice.

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 10:43 am

    Scoop, yes I knew Canadian juniors did some training in Florida, as did Canada’s Fed Cup team. There are photos of them enjoying the Florida sunshine. But, unfortunately, they don’t get to stay there all winter!

    Scoop, you are always making me do more research. I looked into the Tauziat and Bianca coaching relationship a little more. It went later than I’d realised. Stephanie Myles had an article in April, 2018 reporting that Tauziat was no longer Bianca’s coach and the Fed Cup captain Sylvain Bruneau and Tennis Canada coach Andre LaBelle would share the coaching duties. Myles does not give a reason for the change, other than after the 2017 Citi Open Bianca did not have good results.

  • catherine · September 13, 2019 at 11:09 am

    Scoop – there aren’t that many women coaches. And what’s it got to do with BJK ? She was never a coach.

    Male coaches are the tradition. Fits in with lifestyle – wife etc stays at home with kids, man travels.

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 11:13 am

    In an extensive interview with a Canadian tennis coaching forum, Bruneau talked about the need for more women coaches. I wish I’d bookmarked it, it was an interesting piece.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 11:47 am

    Yes BJK was a coach, I forget for who, and also Fed Cup and Olympic coach.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 11:48 am

    Hartt, you are the best! Have to get you a media credential for the tournaments in Canada.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 11:49 am

    This is one of the best videos I ever saw on You Tube.. Enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuoAknS29pA

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 11:54 am

    I found the interview with Sylvain Bruneau. There is no date, but he was still the Fed Cup captain at the time.

    “Do you feel that having more female coaches is important to the growth of tennis in Canada?

    Definitely! I feel this is something we are definitely lacking, and if we could get more female coaches involved I think it would absolutely be a positive for what they can bring to the table. I wish we had more. Having a female on court gives the girls somebody who they can relate and talk to; someone who can maybe understand a little better what it is they may be going through. And I think that is very helpful. I learn a lot talking to other female coaches, I am not a woman but gaining their perspective on things that maybe I would have overlooked is very beneficial. It helps me to see some new ideas or angles that I may have overlooked otherwise.” (tpacanada.com)

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 12:02 pm

    Hartt, I can’t control the future and today’s WTA suggests no one else can, either. I think Andreescu is only human!

    I point all this out to remind that a great performance doesn’t guarantee another one. I like Andreescu a lot, sweet game. We’ve seen many sweet game this year. For the third year in a row we have four different slam champs on the women’s tour.

    Working hard is great. But we’ve gone over this a lot – is a player getting better? What if they no longer want to train in the morning? (See Osaka cancelling the pre 7 am workout). What if coach X wants more money, do you pay her or him or do you say bye?

    Winning a big time tournament like Andreescu did is amazing. She should be proud of herself and Canada of her, for going where no Canadian has gone before. Good beyond that is always always tough.

    We’ll see how she responds to the indoor season!

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 12:10 pm

    Scoop yes, I think only Pennetta avoided the hoopla and the wolves and whatever by announcing her retirement then and there.

    Yes life will be interesting from here on out. I’d guess GenieB must be like thank goodness BiancaA has all the attention, I can just IG and no one will care at all!

    Yes Aranxta wrote a book to this effect, re money and problems. She accused the Sanchez clan of robbing her blind. Apparently it is a huge soap opera and no one knows who’s telling the truth other than Sanchez Vicario hasn’t paid taxes and that one is obvious while her dad manages millions.

    So I say again…nothing is guaranteed and fame changes people. She needs excellent guidance fast. Look no further than Osaka or Zverev and their issues

    Or as Scoop said. Mo money, mo problems.

  • Jon King · September 13, 2019 at 12:29 pm

    I agree on Bianca, love her game and look forward to seeing her future. But with the women and girls it seems so hard to maintain consistency and focus once a bit of success is had.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 12:44 pm

    Hartt, Bruneau might get an email from the USTA about this semi controversial comment: “Having a female on the court gives the girls somebody who they can relate to and talk to, someone who can maybe understand a little bit better what it is they are going through.” Everybody is equal right? Bruneau better be careful in the future or the political correctness brigade might send a reprimand. :0

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 12:51 pm

    Scoop didn’t say it, Notorious B.I.G. did I think or was it Diddy Pee?

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 12:53 pm

    Right Jon, most of the girls are normal and want to enjoy life and the tour and their fame and fortune, not become a Pete Sampras Martina Navratilova tunnel vision destroyer. I can easily see Andreescu becoming like Bouchard and Osaka. Could be wrong. Let’s see. All that matters is her happiness not what fans or media want for her.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 1:08 pm

    Scoop, yes I picked up on this in the Pantic/Falconi interview with Bajin. They were interested in the guy’s personal life and how much he parties (in addition to some very good questions about training).

    I appreciate that Bajin batted that question away like a perfectly hit drop shot. Basically: celebrations are few and far between, most of the time we do laundry and schedule practice courts. Very good response from Bajin, in acknowledging the question, avoiding it (basically, talking about the work and suggesting it’s none of anyone’s business) and moved the interview forward. Bajin had no interest in making his life more dramatic (e.g. I will give you dirt on me and everyone I work with and wreck my reputation and standing in the coaching world right here and now!).

    Instead what we got was: the tour a grind. Very seldomly is there a celebration. And I haven’t seen my sister forever. It was pretty modest, but a good decision for Bajin to play that with a soft touch.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    If a player can coast on tour and live off endorsement money, that’s their choice.

    I don’t think it works that well. With a low ranking in the 130s, just below the 120s where Sharapova is, Bouchard now has the same “status” as Sharapova on tour. I’m pretty sure endorsements have ranking clauses in them…

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 1:12 pm

    My bad. #135 Maria Sharapova. #149 GenieB

  • catherine · September 13, 2019 at 1:30 pm

    Scoop – BJK did coach but she wasn’t a very good one and it was never more than a part-time job for her. Lots of top players, I mean really top ones, aren’t attracted to coaching and don’t do it. BJ was never rated as a coach.

    Why do you keep bringing up this ‘equality’ and ‘political correctness’ thing ? Hasn’t anything to do with coaching or several of the other conversations it’s injected into. Not everything in tennis is a male/female rivalry – very little is really.

    Nothing controversial about Bruneau’s comment.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 1:39 pm

    Andrew, Bajin knows he’s is one sentence away from unemployment. He’s walking on egg shells like Sumyk did for years. Most unstable job in sports is coaching a WTA tennis player.

  • Scoop Malinowski · September 13, 2019 at 1:40 pm

    Good Catherine, I hope Bruneau doesn’t have to go through the ringer, he seems like a very astute, top notch coach.

  • Hartt · September 13, 2019 at 3:06 pm

    Maybe I’m naive, but I honestly don’t think Bianca will have a problem focusing on tennis. I know there are no guarantees she will continue to be successful. To me, the big danger is injury, much more than distractions. It is a positive step to have a full-time physio on her team, along with her trainer and coach. She has a big team now, because she also has a hitting partner. So she is investing in her career.

    There are a couple differences between Bianca and Osaka, and Bianca and Genie. If I remember correctly, much of the incentive for Naomi playing tennis as a child came from her father. Bianca said she loved tennis from the moment she first picked up a racquet. Before then she had played a variety of sports, but afterwards her focus was on tennis. Her parents have supported her dream, but the impetus came from her.

    With Genie, I think she always loved the idea of being famous. She said that she wanted to be like Sharapova, and presumably that meant the glamour, money, etc., as well as titles. When asked about being famous, Bianca replied that she had never thought about it. For her, the fame (and perks like flying in a private jet), are a pleasant by-product of her success, but not her main interest.

    Also, you get the impression that Genie’s mother encouraged Genie’s love of attention. Bianca’s parents are proud, but they seem to be grounded, and will help keep Bianca grounded as well.

    My hope for Bianca is that she have decent results in Beijing (such as the QFs), and makes the WTA finals. Anything else is gravy at this point.

    Next year is still down the road. But, barring injuries, I think she will have a successful season overall. Not as crazy as this one, but a good year.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 3:09 pm

    Scoop, good for Bajin. I’m glad he didn’t take the bait. I’m a little surprised that the tennis journalist – I’m not sure if it was Pantic or Falconi – pressed him on it. Could be they listened to another podcast where Bajin said he hangs out a lot with Mladenovic and then leaves when Thiem is in town or something. Mladenovic is frieds with Bajin, but he didn’t say oh yeah we go to bars and hit the nightlife!

    So Bajin was still playing it straight. After hearing him a few times he doesn’t strike me as a guy that plays with much fire but again his Twitter photo from the past showed off the dude as being a buff fella so I think he lacks self awareness that some of what he promotes (and in addition to being a coach he promotes himself as a coach, always looking for the next job as he knows life as a coach is precarious!).

    So the difference is pretty interesting. I think Bajin’s all right. He says good things and given he says them repeatedly I think he does the same with his players and emphasizes what to work on. From what he says too sounds like he works hard.

    Anyways sorry to say all this. After six months Bajin looks like he landed on his feet and talks like it, and Osaka looks like Jeff said she may not be good at this decision making stuff. If she were US open semis then fine, easy to say good tournament better luck next time. Or a prior slam post Australian. Or winning a title or something.

    But her results have been awful. Happiness over success looks like a rankings drop off a cliff.

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 3:12 pm

    Scoop, another fine comment. Most unstable job is coaching a WTA player! From the on court coaching clips it certainly looks like it. Players treat coaches like Waterboys!

  • Andrew Miller · September 13, 2019 at 3:21 pm

    Player shouldn’t be paranoid. But they should have a good agent that limits the commitments to ones that pay off without too much player involvement. Once the floodgates are open it’s like Zverev or Tiafoe that flies back and forth from NC to NYC and back in a day, to play the next day. I did something like that once…it was insane and I never want to do it again.

1 2

Leave a Reply

<<

>>

Find it!

Copyright 2010
Tennis-Prose.com
To top