Kim Clijsters
Kim Clijsters put Belgian tennis firmly back on the map in 2001, along with compatriot Justine Henin. She became the first Belgian - male or female - to reach a Grand Slam final after recovering to beat Henin in a pulsating French Open semi-final, then took Jennifer Capriati to a thrilling deciding set in the final before the American prevailed 12-10.
She reached a second consecutive final at Hertogenbosch, before losing to Henin, and followed up with quarter-final appearances at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.
Her memorable year began with a shock win over the-then world number one Martina Hingis as she reached her first Tier I final at Indian Wells. She ended 2001 with three WTA singles titles – at Stanford, Leipzig and Luxembourg – and ranked number five in the world. Clijsters also helped Belgium to Fed Cup success in Spain, the first time the European nation had ever won the title.