Jean Borotra CQS Sportsmanship Award

This award is made periodically to a player who has shown throughout his or her playing career the outstanding standard of sportsmanship commensurate with the objects of the International Clubs. 

The relevant objective of the ICs is to “develop, encourage and maintain the highest standards of sportsmanship and understanding among players of all nations and among young players in particular.”

2010 winner Kim Clijsters

2010 winner Kim Clijsters

The International Clubs' Jean Borotra Trophy is a very special award given from time to time to a player whose career has exemplified the true spirit of sportsmanship and fair play which is the central theme of all IC activities. 

This year's recipient, Kim Clijsters, has displayed those qualities in full measure throughout her distinguished career. Seven times the recipient of the WTA Sportsmanship award, Kim's fearless attacking game, smiling demeanour and generous acknowledgment of her opponent's good shots, has made her popular with the sports loving public wherever she has played. 

[Sports journalists, too, have recognized Kim's contribution to the sport. The International Tennis Writers Association named her, along with Morocco's Younes el Aynaoui, 'Best Ambassadors for the Sport of Tennis' for 2003. Two years later, following her first Grand Slam win at the 2005 US Open, Kim received the inaugural 'Ambassador for Sport' award from the Lawn Tennis Writers Association of Great Britain.] 
Kim's rivalry with her friend Justine Henin has made both women among the most popular sporting figures Belgium has ever produced, especially with the Royal Family. Following their battle in the French Open final in 2003 they met with King Albert II, Queen Paola and Crown Prince Philippe who had watched the match. The following year, at a special ceremony in the Royal Palace, the King presented them with the 'Great Cross of the Order of the Crown', a signal honour both for the players and for the sport of tennis. 

The World No.1 in singles and doubles in 2003, Kim had inherited her sporting genes from her parents. Her father, Leo, was a soccer coach and former player who had been Belgium's 'Player of the Year' in 1988, while her mother, Els, had been a top gymnast in Belgium. They gave Kim the strong family values which she retains to this day. 

In was in April 2006 that Kim announced her engagement to the American professional basketball player Brian Lynch. It was clear to Kim that there was more to life than tennis. Accordingly, in May 2007 she announced her retirement from the game to start a family. Her marriage followed two months later and in February 2008 Kim and Brian became the proud parents of Jada Ellie. 
Kim's dramatic return to the Tour in 2009 came when she began to prepare for exhibition matches at Wimbledon to celebrate the opening of the Centre Court's new roof. Her win with Tim Henman against Andre Agassi and his wife, Steffi Graf, made her realise how much she missed the game. The capture of a second US Open title, four months later, in only her third tournament back was as special as it was unexpected. 

Believing strongly in those family values she learnt from her parents, Kim has become an Ambassador for SOS Children's Villages, a Belgian charity which aims to give disadvantaged children a start in life. As a mother herself, she believes strongly that everyone should have the chance to experience the benefits of family life. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, I'm sure you will agree that there is no-one who better represents our 
IC ideals of Sportsmanship and fair play and who better understands the benefit of international sport towards greater international understanding than Kim Clijsters. 

Previous Article 2005 winner Pat Rafter
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