"I'm wasting more energy trying to do something": Elena Rybakina rips into new WTA mandatory rules, sees early retirements without change

Thursday, 02 May 2024 at 07:31
Elena Rybakina while not being a player for showing her emotion certainly doesn't hold back on scheduling issues to do with the WTA with the new mandatory rules being the latest topic of debate after she narrowly defeated Yulia Putintseva at the Madrid Open.
Rybakina admitted to playing 'without emotion' and said she was 'wasting more energy' trying to achieve change. This is after both Madrid and Rome were extended to two weeks tournaments making the change around between those two and Roland Garros almost non existent.
Two in a row means that many players will get minimal rest and with the grass season straight after followed by the Olympic Games and US Open, it is very much never ending. Not being able to choose where they play due to the rules and also ranking changes is another part that perturbs the World No.4.
“I think like it was before if we have two weeks' tournament, Indian Wells, Miami, it's fine, but to make these tournaments like Madrid and Rome also long, and then you have French Open, it's kind of big events," said Rybakina in Madrid Open press.
"With the new rule of change, we have a lot of mandatory stuff where you cannot really choose and pick what you want to play, because, I mean, at some point it's fair enough that people choose what they want to play or not, because if the tour is good for everyone, then people will want to play. But now we’re kind of in an opposite direction where we have to, because everyone is chasing ranking and everyone is chasing some points and so on.
"But if it would be open for everyone, then it's kind of fair enough. You want to play, you play. If you don't want to play, you don't play. So I think there is a lot to improve in the tour, and I spoke a lot last year. I honestly don't have much energy to fight through and say my opinion anymore, because it's not that easy to change something. I feel like I'm wasting more energy trying to do something different or to talk with the people. So, I mean, I'm just following the rules and trying to do the best out of what I have.”
Elena Rybakina (pictured) will face Aryna Sabalenka tomorrow but faces the task of almost non stop play until July.
She also mentioned that as a result she played without emotion and explained that change is needed to prolong careers. Noting Ashleigh Barty, she believes some may choose a shorter career. "Well, honestly, I wouldn't say that it's a good thing, because I think it's nice when you are always hungry to win, when you really want to do your best, but when you are already at the point where you are so tired that at 5-2, you're just, okay, if I'm going to lose, I'm going to have some vacation, because the next tournament is coming.
"This is what I was trying to say about the tour that I think for the players that's not the best. If you want to see good quality of tennis, if you want to see players play long their career, not finish early maybe as Ash did, I think, in my opinion, it would be nice to change something. Of course public wants to see good tennis, good quality, but for the players, it's not easy.
"I mean, of course I'm not here to complain. I'm playing and making good money, but, I mean, I would say that it's not the best thing when you are kind of without emotions and you’re just like on remote control going to play.”

Elena Rybakina on having so many 2 week mandatory events scheduled back to back, ‘If you want to see good quality tennis & players have long careers, it would be nice to change something’ “You mentioned that this tournament is very long and that another mandatory event is…


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