When I saw it on ESPN that “WTA Tour says withdrawals down” I was very confused, especially in the light of the last tournament, the Sony Ericsson Championships, which was all about injuries.
The Championships saw Caroline Wozniacki suffer from severe leg cramps, Serena and Venus Williams had their left legs strapped, alternate Vera Zvonareva’s nose was bleeding and she pulled out after playing just one match, Victoria Azarenka also retired, top seed Dinara Safina retired with a serious back injury, and remember only ten singles players took part in the Championships (eight + two alternates).
Still, WTA Tour chairwoman and CEO Stacey Allaster states that the innovative scheduling system introduced in 2009 proved to be “a fantastic success”. She said the Roadmap increased attendance at Premier tournaments by 11% and decreased player withdrawals by 34%. In addition, prize money was increased by 34%, despite the global economic crisis.