The WTA Race for Year-end number one is BACK ON.
October 7, 2011
Posted by on
Moments ago, Flavia Pennetta landed a memorable victory over Caroline Wozniacki. The match itself was exciting, dramatic and made absolutely zero sense, but perhaps what’s even more interesting is that - after looking done and dusted with Sharapova’s retirement in Tokyo last week and withdrawal from Beijing this week - the race to number one is still on.
With both Wozniacki and Sharapova not scheduled to play any tournament between now and the WTA Championships in Istanbul, it will all come down to that final tournament between the 8 players who have amassed the most points this year. The scenarios are as follows;
If Karolina reaches the final with more than one Round Robin victory, then she will secure the number one spot.
If Karolina reaches the final with only one RR victory, Maria can only secure #1 by winning title unbeaten.
If Karolina wins three matches in RR*, Maria can only secure #1 by winning title unbeaten.
If Karolina wins two matches in RR*, Maria can secure #1 by winning title and losing one match in RR.
If Karolina wins one match in RR*, Maria can secure #1 by winning title with only one RR victory.
If Karolina loses all RR matches, Maria can secure #1 by reaching final unbeaten or taking title with only one RR victory.
*presuming she doesn’t reach the final.
So there you go. It’s hard to say what will be the likely scenario come Istanbul in three weeks. Certainly there is a big possibility of Wozniacki fizzling out quickly, taking into account her recent form and the fact that the only top tenners she has beaten all year are Jankovic and Schiavone. ‘Nuff said.
But on the other hand, will Sharapova’s ankle be 100% by Istanbul? Will she have enough intense practice beforehand to be a threat there? Will the courts prove too quick for her? I don’t think even Sharapova knows the answers to any of those questions right now. However, it’s food for thought and there’s still a chance that this could prove a pretty electric end to the season.
And after an inconsistent year filled mostly with injuries, illnesses and retirements from the greatest active players, an intriguing battle for the top spot would be a much-needed spectacle to close off 2011.