Appointment with Dr. Clijsters

That room wasn’t so large – was built to be small and cozy. There were wooden shelves all around, all filled with a great variety of titles. Then several pictures hung on the walls, all showing great wins and some painful losses – because those are remembered too – a wooden desk with a silver plate with a name on it and a black cushioned couch.

She walked in, and without saying a word, sat, then lied in the couch.

Behind the desk, a paper was being read before she walked in, and after she did, there was not even the slightest mention the reading would be interrupted.

– I’m having problems – she said to that well known figure.

– Too much winning? – The eyes behind the thin glasses kept fixed on the news.

– The ways the wins are coming.

– Still, wins, no? Or you get extra points for the show? Are you sure you care about this?

Can never know for sure.

So, basically – the eyes turned to her, who lied on the couch with her own eyes closed – other people’s opinions are bothering you?

Can’t say for sure, but they’re talking about it. And it doesn’t feel so good when doing it. And the back…

– It hurts? Is the back causing it all?

– A part of it, for sure. Maybe I’m just too old and should retire.

Laughs. Lots of it. Loud, echoing all over the small office.

– World is full of morons, and interactivity has brought their stupidity to a whole new level. You. Still. Rock. Three simple words that must comfort you.

– But if I lose…

– Will happen. Happened before, will happen again.

– …to a player I should not…

– One way or another, they’re pros and deserve their credits too.

– …with a ranking and a career that are not even close to mine…

– Stop being arrogant. That’s so not you. At such this level, there are wins that are likely to come, but you can’t be 100% sure.

The paper was put over the wooden desk, and some pencils rolled by.

– The upsets are all loose over there. Triggering them is the hardest part. Now relax. See those frames? – and the index pointed to the decorated walls – the ultimate proof. You was, you still are. Think a little. The wins totally outnumber the upsets by a non-fair rate.

– So…

– So, you’re a winner. And one loss won’t even tickle your golden career.

Not the end of the world, then?

– Not even close to it. Will never wipe out your 500 triumphs. If you eventually lose…

– Work hard, head tall, rebound next week.

– You have my point there, girl.

– And people will still like me?

Don’t be silly. They will still love you.

– So, no worries, then?

– Just relax and do your thing – the doctor cleaned his glasses – which by the way you do very well, maybe better than anyone else right now.

She opened her eyes, and sat; all the memories flew through her mind, and she smiled with joy.

– Feeling better? – the doctor asked

– Way better! Thank you, Dr. Clijsters! Loved talking to you.

– Any time you want, Kim. Take care!

– Bye! Have to go now. Feeling pumped and there’s a match to be won.

– Bye, Kim! All the best and all the luck in the world.

She stood and then left, still with that graceful smile.

Dr. Clijsters shifted on his set and started reading the sports section again. Giggles.

– What a gem…


Wanted to write this piece earlier, but the inspiration only came at my Brazilian literature class today (you see how much I care). Don’t want to write much else here, so will go straight to my point.

In case you still don’t get it, I created a dialogue between the “on-court” Kim Clijsters and “Dr. Clijsters”, the “rational” and thinking part of her, the one she seems to lose contact with during some of her matches.

Of course, the character represented by “Kim” here is not only her – since it’s stupid even thinking about writing about her thoughts (pay attention at the bolded parts). Yes, it is inspired on her, but is based on and directed to her fans, like me.

Some of those thoughts – like, “she’s out of touch” or “should make an appointment with the doctor that lives inside her brain” – usually come out when an “easy” match turns into something wild – DFs, breaks, and all that stuff that made WTA famous.

However, I never, in any case, put her career in doubt – unlikely some internet tr0ll that said THE WORLD NO.2 AND HOLDER OF THE LAST TWO SLAM TITLES should retire. But it’s a quite simple message I tried to transmit. Again, in case you still haven’t gotten it:

If you are fan, just love her.


Peter Sezberg, Daily Scores headmaster, was never so nervous watching a tennis match than that Australian Open final.


Keep rocking in the free world, Kim


About Pete S. Liguori
Pete was born in São Paulo, Brasil. Loves sports - pigskin fanatic, tennis lover. One of his most famous quotes is "I'm no Tolstoi, but I love the Dallas Cowboys" His favorite quote of all time is "I'll keep playing", unknown author.

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