The International Tennis Hall of Fame is thrilled to induct the Class of 2017 this month. In addition to the induction and various tribute activities, the Museum has two exhibits highlighting the dynamic individuals being recognized for their careers.
The exhibit in the Rosalind P. Walter Tribute Gallery to the Hall of Famers features an overview of the careers of the five members of the Class of 2017: Recent Players Andy Roddick of the United States, Kim Clijsters of Belgium, and wheelchair tennis player Monique Kalkman-van den Bosch of the Netherlands and Contributors Steve Flink and Vic Braden, both of the United States. The exhibit in the Enshrinement Gallery features stories on the inductees’ greatest day in tennis.
Some highlights of the exhibits include: Andy Roddick’s Davis Cup from 2007 and US Open trophy from 2003; Kim Clijsters’s Australian and US Open trophies; Monique Kalkman’s Paralympic medals; Steve Flink’s portable typewriter; and Vic Braden’s video camera. Here are a few words from the inductees themselves about those memories.
Andy Roddick’s US Open Trophy
Capturing the US Open trophy in 2003 and leading the Davis Cup team to victory in 2007, Andy Roddick’s inspiration to achieve greatness undoubtedly took shape during one weekend in Dallas, Texas. As a 9-year old, he witnessed the 1992 Davis Cup Final featuring Hall of Famers Andre Agassi, Jim Courier, John McEnroe, and Pete Sampras.
“You have those daydreams about playing in the Davis Cup and being the No. 1 American and having that responsibility and being part of a team. That 3-day Davis Cup experience shaped the player I became and how I went about things.” - Andy Roddick
Kim Clijsters’s Australian Trophy
Kim Clijsters won the 2005, 2009, and 2010 US Opens, and the 2011 Australian Open during her storied career. She also won doubles titles at the French Open and Wimbledon. Those championship drives taught her about the high level of dedication needed to become a GS Champion.
“When you’re trying to win a Grand Slam, nothing comes for free. You have to work hard, stay disciplined and remain focused. I know what that’s like and try to do that every day.” - Kim Clijsters
Monique Kalkman’s Paralympic Medals
With an undeniable spirit burning from within, Monique Kalkman took control of her destiny and overcame seemingly insurmountable odds to win Paralympic Gold medals in wheelchair tennis at 1992 Barcelona (2x Gold: singles and doubles) and 1996 Atlanta (Gold in doubles; Silver in singles). Looking back on her golden career, she remains grateful to the sport.
“I realize that amongst my dream, the blood, sweat and tears that went into tennis, the spirit, the resilience, the patience, the commitment, the joy, the wins and the losses, wheelchair tennis is a huge contributor to the person who I am today.” - Monique Kalkman
Vic Braden’s Video Camera
Heralded tennis instructor Vic Braden applied a scientiﬁc approach to the physics of tennis, and he dedicated his life to teaching rational, research-based instruction in a way that made learning the game effective and fun for his students. Armed with his trusty motion-capture video camera, Braden analyzed the biomechanics and physics behind players’ successes and shortcomings in slow motion. His groundbreaking research created the blueprint for modern sports science, but for him, it was about finding the answers.
“For me, research provides answers and rationale. For many years all we heard was because I said so. For me, it wasn’t just a research project. It was finding answers for any question people wanted to ask. Each new discovery was as exciting as the first one.” - Vic Braden
Steve Flink's Typewriter
For over 40 years, esteemed tennis journalist and historian Steve Flink has covered the sport full-time. Many of those years were before the advent of the personal computer. He relied on his typewriter, the Olympia Traveller de Luxe S, to share his detailed chronicles of incredible tennis matches and personalities. Flink’s dedication and eloquent writing led to him to become one of the sport’s most authoritative voices and personalities. He continues to work for the Tennis Channel, covering the game all over the world. His love of tennis was sparked at young age and stayed with him throughout.
“My father loved to play tennis and he inspired me to play. Later he took me to Wimbledon when I was 12 and was lucky enough to stay with the game. I met Bud Collins in 1969 and 3 years later, I worked with him during Wimbledon and the US Open. He became a great booster of mine and I admired him immensely.” - Steve Flink