Protected seedings must be brought in in women tennis

May 23, 2018, 9:23:00 AM

Protected seedings must be brought in in women tennis

A former Wimbledon and US Open doubles winner was saying on CNN that she didn't think Serena Williams cared that she is unseeded at events. Baloney! Of course she would care, she doesn't want to be in a situation of meeting the likes of her sister Venus in the first round, or Simona Halep or another prominent name so early.

The matter of protected seeding has come up in discussion once again because the French Open has refused to seed Serena Williams. However, at Wimbledon it is likely to be different and she could very well be seeded there, as she should.

The same former player said that the matter of protected seeding for a player returning from maternity leave would open up a can of worms and it would then raise the question as to why not apply protected seedings to players returning from injuries.

Err, it is not the same. That is like comparing apples to oranges or more appropriately, clay to grass.

I wrote about this whole aspect of protected seedings in March here on when Serena Williams played the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells and the Miami Open. I said then then it needs to be rules should be changed and protective seedings be introduced. The WTA must seriously look at this aspect and change the rules.

It is surprising that someone might suggest that by providing a player with a protected seeding coming off maternity leave would have players etc making a case for the same following a lengthy period off with injury. That's just ridiculous.

Anyone can get injured and be out of the game for quite a while, that's why there is the protected ranking to help those players.

A protected ranking and protected seeding for maternity leave would allow a woman to take time off to have a family.

The central aspect to this matter is that this is a women's organisation and any woman player wanting to have a baby is penalised. In normal society that would be against the law in the majority of western nations. A woman returning from maternity leave goes back into the work force with the organisation they were connected to and with the role they had.

Why should that be any different for a woman tennis player?

A woman returning from maternity leave is a matter that stands on its own and cannot and must not be compared to any other situation where a player must take time away from playing. That's it, end of story.