(December 2, 2013) Lleyton Hewitt was awarded Australia’s top tennis honor, the Newcombe Medal, at a gala celebration at Crown Palladium, Melbourne.
In receiving the award the South Australian tennis ace was formally recognized as Australia’s most outstanding player in 2013. He was presented the award by his first Davis Cup captain and mentor, Australian tennis legend John Newcombe, in whose honor the award is named.
In 2013 Hewitt spent 75 weeks at world No. 1 from 2001 to 2003. Ranked outside the world’s top 100 in February, Hewitt has climbed his way back up the rankings to now sit at No. 60.
“To win an award named after the great John Newcombe is a huge honor and one that caps off a great year,” Hewitt said.
“Obviously I’ve been fortunate enough to have a long career and there have been plenty of highs and some definite lows as well, but this is up there as high as it gets.”
“It really means a lot to be up here… it’s a fantastic thing that we started four years ago and I hope it goes on for many more years.”
“I’m thrilled and so proud to present this award to Lleyton, and it’s appropriate he receives it at the end of what has been a brilliant comeback year,” Newcombe said.
“He’s had an amazing year and his terrific results have again shown the grit and determination he’s renowned for.
“I’ve worked with Lleyton since he was 15, when Rochey and I enlisted him as an orange boy for Davis Cup. We knew then he was destined for a pretty special career, but probably didn’t expect the skinny kid with his cap on backwards to set a record for the number of weeks spent at world No.1.
“This has been a remarkable year for Lleyton. His first for some time without the impediment of injury, and he’s made the most of it, posting some tremendous results, unexpected to almost everyone but him. He doesn’t get on the court unless he believes he can win, and his passion and commitment, particularly for Davis Cup, are an inspiration to us all.”