Open victory reveals two sides of Clijsters
By Larry Fine
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Kim Clijsters, the long-running success story on New York's grand slam stage, is as ruthless on court as she is supportive off it.
The 27-year-old Clijsters offered words of encouragement to Vera Zvonareva, the victim she pummeled in Saturday's final for her third U.S. Open crown and second in a row, on the court during the trophy presentation.
"Vera just keep it going, it will happen," the Belgian said as consolation to the seventh-seeded Russian, who had reached her second successive grand slam final but is still looking for her maiden triumph.
Later Clijsters told reporters the 59-minute 6-2 6-1 drubbing she delivered was motivated by revenge, a desire to exact some payback for her three-set quarter-final loss to the Russian at Wimbledon.
"I kind of knew going into the match which things I didn't do well in those two matches that I lost," she said of the loss in London and a 2-6 6-3 6-2 defeat in Montreal last month.
"The one at Wimbledon was one of the most disappointing losses that I've dealt with so far in my career."
Overall, Clijsters held a 5-2 head-to-head advantage over her opponent, but those defeats still burned.
"In a way I was excited to play her in the final here just to try and get that revenge, but I also learned a lot of things," she revealed. Continued...