Casey Dellacqua’s glittering 16-year career has been recognised with the Spirit of Tennis Award at the Newcombe Medal.
Dellacqua was presented with the award by Australia’s Fed Cup captain and former teammate Alicia Molik.
The Spirit of Tennis Award goes to an individual who has personified the essence of leadership, passion, sportsmanship, goodwill and dedication to the sport, while making a major contribution to the stature of tennis.
“To those of us who know her and love her, she’ll always be a warm and wonderful person with great integrity, first of all, who values family and friendship above all, above competing, above results,” Molik said.
“Truly, this embodies the spirit of tennis. We’re all extremely proud of you. You represented your country with distinction – two Olympics, so many Fed Cups, and of course your mixed doubles Grand Slam title and of course so many Grand Slam finals with our very own Ash (Barty). Casey’s dealt with more than her fair share of injuries, surgeries and setbacks, and her commitment to coming back, every time stronger than before, is an inspiration to us all.”
Dellacqua was overwhelmed with emotion when she accepted her award.
“I’ve had such an amazing career – the highlight for me is obviously always representing my country. I will miss that tremendously,” she said.
“I want to thank all my Fed Cup teammates and the other Australian girls who have made my time on tour so much fun.
“There’s always another half that paves the way for you to be able to do what you love. And I’ve been very grateful to have Amanda along the way to support me and our children. I actually have said for a number of years, if there’s any award that I could win, it would be the Spirit of Tennis Award, because it’s something that has always I guess stood true to me. I’ve always felt that you can be a great tennis player but it’s being gracious that goes along with that that I really value. I’m really thankful and grateful for this award.”