Saluting Kim Clijsters and remembering Leo

Congratulations to Kim Clijsters on her victory at the U.S. Open. Clijsters retired from tennis more than two years ago, had a child, and returned to the circuit only a month ago. Due to her absence she was unseeded (and unranked) going into the U.S. Open.
In winning the Open, she defeated both Williams sisters. Her victory over Serena in the semi-finals was marred by a picky foot-fault call against Serena, followed by a tirade at a linesman, which cost her match point. Clijsters, however, was up a set and ahead in the second at the time.
I’ve followed Clijsters’ career closely because she’s the daughter of Leo Clijsters, one of my favorite European soccer players. Leo Clijsters was a world class defender who starred at two World Cups for outstanding Belgian teams. The 1986 edition made it to the semi-finals.
Clijsters died of cancer early this year. It was reported that Kim wanted to have a child before her father died.
I don’t see much physical resemblance between father and daughter. Leo Clijsters, as I recall, was a wiry guy whose long, shaggy hair gave him a sort of “wolf man” appearance. But they had in common their terrific athleticism.


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