Empty feeling at Mercury Insurance Open
Several big names including Kim Clijsters have already withdrawn from the annual event, and according to the San Diego Union Tribune, a WTA official confirmed Monday that the tour owes the tournament $50,000 for not satisfying entry minimums for a premier event.
Tour by-laws, mandate that premier tournaments include one player ranked in the top six and two in the top 10. This year’s field includes only one top-10 player: Vera Zvonareva.
But according to five-time grand slam winner Marina Hingis, women’s tennis as a whole is undergoing a change that further hinders name recognition. At the moment, the WTA lacks what she called “true grand slam champions.”
“You had more top solid players [when I played] then what you have today,” Hingis said Monday. “But there’s a wider selection today, and you have to be 100% all the time.”
-- Matt Stevens
Photo: Sabine Lisicki serves during her match against Greta Arn at the Mercury Insurance Open on Tuesday. Credit: Jeff Gross / Getty Images