ANTWERP, Belgium - Kim Clijsters has been keeping very busy since retiring from professional tennis two years ago, but she's about to get even busier - the four-time Grand Slam champion and former World No.1 will be the Tournament Director for the BNP Paribas Fortis Diamond Games in Antwerp, a Premier-level indoor event that is returning to the WTA calendar in 2015 the week of February 9.
"After seven years, world class tennis is coming back to Antwerp," she said. "The new BNP Paribas Fortis Diamond Games will not only become a high-level tennis event, but much more than that."
One of the traditions unique to the tournament in its first incarnation, and which will return for this reboot, is the coveted diamond racquet - anyone who wins the tournament twice in three years wins a special racquet made with 4.5 kilograms of gold and 2008 diamonds. It's worth $1.5 million.
"Believe me, that makes this tournament particularly attractive for the female tennis players!" Clijsters said about the coveted diamond racquet. "Our first goal is to set up the strongest possible competition, including some of the biggest stars in tennis and several players from the Top 20.
"A trophy like this is a serious boost to achieve these ambitions."
In its original run between 2002 and 2009, the tournament awarded the racquet to any player who won the title three times in five years - the only player who achieved the feat was Amélie Mauresmo, who actually won the tournament three straight years from 2005 to 2007 (check out the pic below).
And the players aren't the only ones playing for a girl's best friend - every 100th person who buys tickets receives a 10 carat diamond. For more information on tickets visit www.diamondgames.be.