Kim Clijsters

Kim Clijsters

Kim Clijsters

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Is she gone for good this time?

Justine Henin retired from tennis for a second time Wednesday, citing a lingering right elbow injury.

The past few weeks, there was a little bit more pain every day, but I thought my willpower would prevail. Today, the tests and my doctors are adamant. It is clear now that I have to accept that my career ends for good. Even if it is hard, very hard, at a time when I came back with enormous fighting spirit.

Henin, 28, won 43 WTA singles titles and seven Grand Slam singles titles, including four French Open titles, one Australian Open title, and two US Open titles. She has also won the year-ending Sony Ericsson Championships twice and the singles gold medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics.

She announced retirement from professional tennis in May 2008 and returned to competition in 2010.
She reached the 2010 Australian Open final (lost to Serena Williams) but missed the most part of the season, due to an elbow injury.

Kim Clijsters, who will play Li Na in Saturday’s Australian Open final after defeating Vera Zvonareva in straight sets, said she was surprised by the news:

“I was obviously surprised when I heard that news. To be honest, I haven’t been in touch with her, so I don’t know what the situation is with her elbow. It is a sad situation to see such a great player end her career on such a note.”

It was against Clijsters at Wimbledon that Henin slipped awkwardly and suffered the injury to her elbow that ultimately ended her career.

I must say I never really like her personality but her game was beautiful to watch, in particular her one handed backhand. I wish her the best for the future.

Check out Nike new video series, McEnroe’s Insights, where John McEnroe look at some of Nike’s players: Roger Federer, John Isner, Bernard Tomic:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YWm4Qr1vfps[/youtube]

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ScySFsQI-os[/youtube]

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIqBO3q33Qs[/youtube]

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gU0uhvD2Csg[/youtube]

If the collective emotions of the Australian people could be harnassed, Patrick Rafter would have won a sackful of Australian championships. He was one of our most popular players because of his gallantry, his dashing style of play, and lack of affectation. His good looks won him a few points too.

Pat Rafter

Ever since Mark Edmondson won the 1976 Open, Australians had been awaiting another home-grown champion to place his name on the men’s honour roll. One of the vanishing breed of serve and volley players, Rafter slowly imposed himself on the Australian consciousness in the 90s. But he rarely played as well at home as on foreign shores. He twice won the US Open and twice made the Wimbledon final.

His best effort at Melbourne Park was a fourth round finish in 1995 – the best, that is, until 2001, when he faced Andre Agassi in a semifinal, with a chance to play either Arnaud Clement or Yevgeny Kafelnikov in the final.

Pat Rafter

On a warm, steamy evening, Rafter led Agassi by two sets to one. As the match wore on, however, the heat and tension took toll of the Aussie’s muscles, causing him to sweat heavily, cramp, and struggle with fatigue. Agassi, keeping down unforced errors, won 7-5 2-6 6-7 6-2 6-3.

Andre Agassi

Andre Agassi and Pat Rafter

Source: 2010 official program

In the third game of the match, Courier runs into trouble on his serve: the game goes to 6 deuces, before Edberg breaks. From then on, it’s a perfect display of serve and volley tennis, and Edberg captures his first US Open title with a 6-2 6-4 6-0 masterpiece victory. Edberg put on one of the best performances in a Grand Slam final.

Edberg

Courier

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