Catching Up With... Kim Clijsters
by Matt Fitzgerald|
Defending Sony Ericsson Open champion Kim Clijsters is one of the most personable players in professional tennis… and it’s hard not to like her. She balances motherhood with a demanding career, is a seven-time recipient of the Karen Krantzcke Sportsmanship Award, an honor awarded by her peers; and has christened her Twitter followers as her “Tweethearts.”
Oh yeah, and then there’s her on-court accomplishments. Her win at the Australian Open gave the Belgian her fourth Grand Slam singles title, her second consecutive major after taking home the US Open trophy in 2010. She’s the owner of 41 WTA singles titles, including three WTA season-ending championships (2002, 2003 and 2010). Perhaps her most noteworthy accomplishment to date is this fact - Clijsters is one of just six players in WTA history to hold the No. 1 ranking in singles and doubles simultaneously, a feat she achieved in August of 2003.
We caught up with Clijsters tonight after her remarkable comeback win over Serbian Ana Ivanovic, where she saved five match points before winning the fourth round contest 7-6(4), 3-6, 7-6(5).
The Sony Ericsson Open attracts a lot of families… some out of town and even some international visitors. Being a mother of a young child yourself, what places in Miami do you recommend for family-friendly activities?
KC: Well, there are a lot of things to do. The sea aquarium that’s on Key Biscayne here is nice… then there are nice beaches, so if it’s not too hot, you can always take them there.
We’ve rented bikes while we’re here… we’ve been doing a lot of bike riding and had picnics at the end of the island. There’s the children’s museum as well and we took Jada to the Bayside Mall, to walk around and get the Miami atmosphere. So yeah, there are many things. We don’t drive too far because I still have to play, so we haven’t been to Disney[world] yet, haha.
Speaking of Jada, what is she up to these days? She’s at that age where curiosity really starts to blossom!
KC: Yeah definitely. Curiosity and a lot of energy. She likes to test us now. When you say no, she likes to try it again and you say no again (smiles). It’s very hands on but this age is a lot of fun as well. She’s starting to talk really well and speaks both Flemish and English.
And now for our “Toss Up” question of the day, between your husband Brian and yourself: Who is better at playing the other one’s sport… and do you have any evidence to back this up?
KC: Oooh! Brian plays more tennis than I play basketball. I’d say he’s better because he’s done it more. But I enjoy watching basketball. We’ve been following the NCAA tournament live and we’ve been to many games.
The Last Time You…
Bought Tennis Balls: We bought them in New Jersey before the US Open at the Atlantic Club, so not too long I’d say.
Lost Something Valuable: Haha, I lose important stuff all the time. I recently couldn’t find my engagement ring. I looked everywhere and it ended up being somewhere completely unexpected. It’s like I knew it was so important that I put it in a safe place that no one else would find! But yes, I’m always misplacing valuable items.
Went To A Concert: Let me think for a second. We go to a lot of concerts… Kings of Leon, that was our most recent one.
Visited A Country For The First Time: In January actually. I went to Thailand and played in an exhibition with Caroline Wozniacki and the Bryan Brothers were also there. Brian and I loved it. It was a very enjoyable experience.
Slept Eight Hours Or More In A Row: Not too long ago. Not last night because Jada needed something but the night before, I slept long. We’re very lucky that she’s so good when it comes to sleeping!
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