Serena Williams ends season despite qualifying for Doha and committing to Fed Cup

Wilson Blade 9

Serena WilliamsWe were wondering whether Serena Williams would finally recover from an infamous visit to a restaurant and show up for the prestigious and luxurious Sony Ericsson Championships in Doha where she is nothing less than a defending champion, but the American’s recent resurgence of her foot injury is still her reality and the latest news is that she won’t play tennis for the rest of the season. The fact implies that Serena will skip the Fed Cup final against Italy in San Diego in November.

Can someone who is better at maths than I am calculate how Serena’s skipping of Doha will affect the rankings? How much will it stabilize Caroline Wozniacki at No.1?

There’s one more thing, Serena’s withdrawal is leaving one spot open in the Doha draw and the top contender for that berth is China’s Li Na, who is ranked 10th in the Race to the Sony Ericsson Championships. (Update: Even though Li is ranked higher in the Race, Victoria Azarenka has now qualified and Li is the first substitute.)

Reminder: Serena’s sister Venus had also withdrawn from both the Sony Ericsson Championships and the Fed Cup final.

The $4.55 million Sony Ericsson Championships start next week, on October 26th. (photo by our reader Jacob)


  1. Okay now a little talk about rankings.
    The only one who can eventually take n.1 ranking from Woz is Zvonareva. That will happen only if Wozniacki doesn’t gain any points at Doha and Vera wins the whole thing withot losing a single match. Chances are quite minimal,of course.
    When Serena’s Doha points fall off she will be number 5 by default, but IF other players behind (Jelena,Francesca,Stosur) do REALLY well in Doha she could fall as low as number 8, or even 9 if Dementieva suddenly wakes up and reaches semis at least.But these are big IF.
    I think that Kim and Francesca have the best chance to move up the rankings.
    Jelena and Stosur are in terrible form so I don’t think they will do any good out there with top players.

  2. Migi, thanks for sharing the info. The news came out after I published the post. You see how bad I am with taking everything into account and calculating the rankings. 🙁

    Milano, wow amazing analysis. I will keep it as my reference. 🙂 Hey can I maybe use it as some sort of guest post by you on my blog? So that more people can see it.

  3. i love when you use my photos 🙂

    i got a new camera for my 18th so i’ll take some good photos for you in sydney and i’ll be in paris around roland garros so fingers crossed!! 🙂

  4. Marija , of course you can use my posts ;). It will be my pleasure. Just to add a few things I forgot to mention:
    Venus will have around 5000 points by the end of the year, just like her sister (Serena will have around 5100) . Schiavone has 5035 points now but she will automatically gain 210 even if she loses all 3 of her round robin matches in Doha. That means that both Williamses will be ranked 5. or lower by the end of the year,with Serena in front of Venus.
    I think we will watch an interesting battle for no. 2 year end spot between Vera and Kim ( or even Franceca)
    Stosur needs to win (just) 2 matches to reach no. 6 in the world.
    The latest qualifier Azarenka will have to do something really big to make a move up the rankings.
    And of course JJ.She lost in Kremlin cup to number 268, Zarina Dias 6-1 6-2,she is feeling ill,she is going to have an eye surgery by the end of the season…I’d say she is the weakest Doha player right now.

  5. No , just a routine surgery on her left eye.There’s something to be taken out from her eye :/ I just hope she and Williams Sisters will be prepared for the next season cuz I miss their game.I really hope for more JJ – Williamses matches in 2011.

  6. I am surprised by this, I thought she would at least play Fed Cup because that is the ticket to play the Olympics.
    It’s a shame that Ana Ivanovic is not in Doha this year, I think she would do a better job than JJ who needs a holiday quite badly.

  7. The fact that both Venus and Serena will not play the FedCup final allows Italy to meet the challenge as a favorite, then with a stronger mentality… But personally I believe that, if Italy were to win, if the two sisters had played the victory would have been a whole different flavor 😛

    About possible changes in the ranking, I read that Francesca can reach up to third place,but to do that she should win the Masters unbeaten, and hope that Kim loses before the final, to become number 2 she would have to win back the tournament in Moscow and win the Masters!!

    The article also explains how Francesca might be number 4 or number 5… But I think I have bored you enough!! 😛

  8. Milano, I will make a little post out of your projections. Thanks for that. 🙂 I just have to arrange with one guest poster what he will write about, as he also wanted to include year-end ranking projections in his article.

    Migi, I read it in Serbian media that the surgery will not be serious but she will need a couple of weeks to recover.

    Marine, isn’t it enough for a player to commit to Fed Cup? It means that if you commit and then opt out because of medical problems it counts as if you played (concerning qualifying for the Olympics).


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