Kim Clijsters Says 2011 Will Be Her Final Full Season

Lauren LynchCorrespondent IIJanuary 31, 2011

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Kim Clijsters pinched back tears after collecting her first career Australian Open championship and second straight major title with a 3-6, 6-3, comeback win over Li Na in the Melbourne final.

It is Clijsters' fourth Grand Slam crown in what was likely her last Australian Open appearance. It comes seven years after she lost to compatriot Justine Henin in the 2004 final.

“I finally feel like you guys can call me Aussie Kim because I won the title,” Clijsters said during the trophy presentation. “Even when things weren’t going good, you guys were really supportive of me and I really appreciate it."

Clijsters said 2011 will be her final full season and if this was her farewell to Australia she said good-bye in style thanking Australian fans, who have embraced her as one of their own

The 27-year-old Clijsters has been revered as an honorary Aussie since the days when she was engaged to Australian No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt.

The pair never got married, but Clijsters consummated her quest for the nation’s championship, fighting back from a one-set, 2-3 deficit in the first major final of the Open Era between married women.

Clijsters won her her first major title outside of New York City. Clijsters, who lost her first four major finals, won the 2005 U.S. Open and has reigned in New York in each of the past two years.

Three of her four Grand Slam titles have come since Clijsters gave birth to daughter Jada.

As she continues to add to her collection of Grand Slam silverware, Clijsters sees the career finish line in sight. She says she plans to play the 2012 Olympic Games at Wimbledon next summer and may well call it quits after that, as she and husband Brian Lynch, a New Jersey native, would like to have more children.

"I do think this is probably my last full season that I'll be playing. I also would like to try and keep going until the Olympics," Clijsters said. "I've never played the Olympics, which is in a year and a half time, or a little under a year and a half. Yeah, so and then we'll see after that."


For images of Women's Final and Doubles Final- Click here.

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