Singapore captures heart of tennis star Serena Williams with orchid named after her

Lawrence Wong, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth & Second Minister for Ministry of Communications and Information, presenting a bouquet of flowers to winner Serena Williams as Emeritus Senior Minister Gok Chok Tong and tennis legend Billi
Lawrence Wong, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth & Second Minister for Ministry of Communications and Information, presenting a bouquet of flowers to winner Serena Williams as Emeritus Senior Minister Gok Chok Tong and tennis legend Billie Jean King look on during the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore trophy presentation at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Oct 26, 2014. -- ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

SINGAPORE - Women's tennis star Serena Williams took home a trophy and more than $2 million for her win over Romanian Simona Halep in the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Finals in Singapore on Sunday, but an orchid named after her really captured her heart.

The orchid hybrid bears purple and white-coloured flowers in line with the WTA's colours, and it blooms throughout the year.

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It is a hybrid between Dendrobium Pramot and Burana Charming. Doubles winners Cara Black from Zimbabwe and Sania Mirza from India also had the orchid honour.

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The three women are the next sports celebrities celebrated this way in Singapore, after golfer Annika Sorenstam, the world's top female golfer at the time, took part in the Lexus Cup here in 2006.

The Singapore Tourism Board said that the flowers were named after them to echo WTA's ideal of expanding women's roles in sport and society.

Orchid christening goes a long way, with the first named in 1956 after Lady Anne Black, the wife of a former governor of Singapore.

The nearest you can get to some celebrities, dignitaries and visiting heads of states is probably at the National Orchid Garden at the Singapore Botanical Gardens.

Here are others who have had hybrid orchids named after them.

1. Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan 

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2. Britain's first female prime minister Margaret Thatcher

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3. Singaporean singer-songwriter Stefanie Sun

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4. Renowned Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli 

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5. Former UN secretary general Kofi Annan

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