The Women’s Tennis Association

Read all about the WTA, from its beginnings up to today, and understand how its cumulative points ranking system works.

History of the WTA

The Women’s Tennis Association, more commonly known as the WTA, was founded by Billie Jean King in 1973. She did this to try and establish more equality between women and men tennis players,  mainly due to the prize funds being much larger for men than for women. An example of this was when Margaret Court won the Grand Slam in 1970 and received just a $15,000 bonus, whilst for men this same bonus could reach up to $1 million. It became such an issue that several women tennis players were  intending to boycott the next Grand Slam event. Billie Jean King then created the 1970 Houston Women’s Invitation, a women’s only tournament with nine participants. These same nine women, along with the publisher of World Tennis Magazine Gladys Heldman, then created their own tour called The Virginia Slims Circuit in an act of total rebellion against the United States Lawn Tennis Association.

By uniting all the women tennis players she paved the way for a new era within the tennis world. It didn’t take long before the first matches were being broadcast on television and sponsorship started rolling in. By 1980 over 250 women were taking part in the association, with 47 global events and a prize fund of $7.2 million. All of this not only helped to advance gender equality within tennis but also for women’s sports in general. Those nine tennis players became famous for this and were nicknamed The Original Nine. The tour then slowly grew into the WTA we know today.

The WTA has kept growing and is today’s global leader in women’s professional sport with over 2,500 players representing 92 nations. There are more than 50 events and four Grand Slam tournaments held every year in several different countries for a total of over $125 million in prize money.

 

The WTA Ranking System

The WTA Ranking System is based on a yearly cumulative point system. This means that a player’s ranking is determined by the results in a maximum of 16 tournaments for singles and 11 tournaments for doubles. The system is made up in such a way that there are certain tournaments that give more points than others, for example a Premier Mandatory tournament will give 1000 points to the overall winner but a WTA International tournament will only give 280 points to the winner. Also, the further a player reaches in a tournament will give her more points towards her total amount, with a huge difference between a first round defeat and winning the title. All in all, it’s a fairly complicated point system but is accurate as an indicator for a players performance. The best and most consistent players will always be near the top of the rankings list.

Some would say that the downside to this system is the fact that it forces players to continuously compete at specific places and times. This in turn means that if a player has an injury she will lose points for not being able to compete. But, this is the same for every woman on the tour and if an injured player performs well before and after a lay-off, she should return to where she was previously ranked quite quickly.

 

2016 WTA Tour Information

The 2016 Women’s Tennis Association Tour is the 46th edition and will run from 4 January – 6 November, consisting of 62 tournaments. These tournaments are made up of four Grand Slams, four Premier Mandatory events, five Premier 5 events, Twelve Premier events, 34 International events, the WTA Finals, The summer Olympic Games and the WTA Elite Trophy.

Serena Williams started the year at the top of the WTA rankings list, with players like Simona Halep and Garbine Muguruza closing in on her and aiming to leapfrog her into first place. It will be an exciting season on the WTA Tour with several months of great matches, upset victories, renewed rivalries and rising stars staking their claim on the top titles.

 


Related News

Australian Open Women’s Singles Final

After two weeks of exciting tennis action, 128 players have been whittled down to two as the best of the tournament prepare to face each other in the Women’s Singles Final of the Australian Open.Those two players are American world number one and defending champion Serena Williams and German seventh seed Angelique Kerber, who will be playing in her first ever Grand Slam Final. Here, we will take preview the Final and take a look at how these two great players made it through to the Championship match. Serena Williams came into this tournament nursing a knee injury that had forced her to retire from her first tournament of the season, The Hopman Cup, in the first week of January. The swelling had gone down by the time the first round of the first Grand Slam of the season rolled around but there were still serious concerns over her fitness. She put an end to any doubt quickly by performing brilliantly in her first match and has gone from strength to strength as the tournament has gone on. She comes into this Women’s Singles Final without dropping a set and looking pretty unbeatable as she looks to win her seventh Australian Open title. Her opponent, Angelique Kerber, had never been past the fourth round of this tournament before but has performed as good as ever to reach the Final on her ninth visit to Melbourne. Last year, she went out in the first round and after dropping the first set of her first round match this year, she was in danger of history repeating itself. She showed great mental...

Women’s Singles Semi Finalists

The excitement at the Australian Open is hotting up as we reach the Semi Final stage. The first in the Women’s Singles will see defending champion and top seed Serena Williams taking on Polish fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska, whilst the second sees unseeded Australian born Brit Johanna Konta take on German seventh seed Angelique Kerber. Here is a look at the four women hoping to book a place in the Final. Serena Williams came into the tournament nursing injuries and with huge concerns over her fitness. Any fears she may have had will be completely gone now after dominating all five of her opponents to reach the last four without dropping a single set. The six-time champion will be most people’s tip to lift the title again, and looks like she is playing better with every match that passes. Agnieszka Radwanska will be playing in the Semi Finals for the second time in her career, after reaching the same stage in 2014. She has only dropped one set during the tournament so far, the first of her fourth round match, but has looked comfortable in the remainder of her matches. She easily brushed aside tenth seed Carla Suarez-Navarro in the Quarter Final and comes into the last four looking in great form. Johanna Konta beat Shuai Zhang in straight sets to become the first British woman to reach a Grand Slam Semi Final since Jo Durie in 1983. The 24-year-old, ranked 47th in the WTA, started the tournament with a straight sets win over eighth seed Venus Williams and has gone from strength to strength since then. She is...

Will Serena bounce back in Melbourne?

The tennis year is over, but already the players have begun to prepare for the first big event of 2016- Australian Open. From the 18 – 30 January a total of 128 players will compete in the women’s edition of the Australian Open. The big question of that tournament is whether Serena Williams can bounce back from the disappointment of not winning the US Open 2015 ore she wil face the struggle she had in 2014? The 34-year-old American has held the world no. 1 ranking for almost three straight years, and recently came two wins away from capturing a legendary Calendar Grand Slam at the US Open. Although she had an astonishing season the lost semifinal in New York caused her to end her season immediately afterwards, and is was clear to everybody that follows tennis that Serena felt the blow of that loss more than she had felt the joy of any of her many other successes. Another player who will be someone to follow in Melbourne is Victoria Azarenka. The two-time Australian Open champion returned from a previous season wrecked with injuries end personal struggles in 2015, and fought her way back to the top. Although she never claimed a title, Azarenka did not look far from her brilliant best nearer the end of the year to approaching her form of...

Williams withdraws herself from Singapore

The worlds best female tennis player, Serena Williams, has decided to withdraw herself from the sport until next year. Serena justified her decision by saying that she needed to rest her body and she is therefore withdrawing from both China Open and the end season in Singapore. According to sources she is “taking a proactive step and withdrawing from tournaments in Beijing and Singapore to properly address my health and take the time to heal.“ It’s the worlds eight greatest tennis players that participate in the end season in Singapore. Maria Sharapova has also withdrawn herself from the...

US Open 2015: Aftermath

Despite our expectations, Serena Williams did not manage to beat Roberta Vinci in the semifinals which means she did not win this edition of US Open. Serena was set as the big favorit in this match so it came as a surprise to everyone. When you compare stats between the two it’s quite obvious why it was such a chock: Vinci has lost 24 matches in 2015 whileas Serena Williams has lost 22 matches in the past 10 year! Even more frustrating, the italian Roberta Vinci got beaten in the semifinals by Flavia Pennetta another Italian tennis player. We hope you enjoyed our us open live streaming services. Come back soon for Davis Cup 2015 Live Stream. On the Men’s Singles side it is a lot less surprising to see the legendary Novak Djokovic as winner of Us Open 2015. In deed, Roger Federer did his best however still got defeated by Djokovic. Federer had the following to say: “I’m pleased with how my game’s at. I feel that it’s still moving in the right direction and that is thanks to a great team. They make me work hard in a good way. I love the sport. I have a lot of passion. I’ll see you guys next...

Sharapova out of US Open

The year’s final Grand Slam is finally upon us! This week we will be able to watch US Open in all its glory. However the tournament has barely begun and already we learn that the Russian tennis queen Maria Sharapova will not be participating due to an leg injury. Maria Sharapova has not played since Wimbledon where she lost to Serena Williams during the semifinals. She had the following to say on her Facebook page: Unfortunately I will not be able to compete in this year’s US Open, I have done everything possible to be ready but it was just not enough time. To all my amazing fans, I will be back in the Asian swing in a few weeks and look forward to finishing the year healthy and strong. This is not the first time that Sharapova withdraws herself from US Open. In 2008 it was because of a shoulder operation that hindered her from playing for around 10 months. In 2013, it was the exact same right shoulder that prevented her from participating and now it’s her leg. US Open might have lost a major player but it doesn’t make it any less exciting. Remember you can watch US Open Live Stream and follow all the...

Serena scores super charmer

It has now been quite a while since the rumors started running on about Serena Williams having as much success with her love life as she has on the courts. Even though it was never officially confirmed by both parties, it has almost been a public secret that the 33 year old tennis queen had a relationship with the Canadian rapper Drake. However this weekend at last the confirmation came to us in the form of dewy pictures of the love couple. The pictures are a couple of days old and show the romantic couple having dinner in the fancy and expensive Italian restaurant Sotto in Cincinnati, Ohio. According to TMZ.com, it didn’t take long before the other guests started taking pictures of the celebrity couple with their phones. That exact same day, Serena won the WTA tournament Cincinnati Masters by beating Rumanian Simona Halep in a glorious final match. This counted as the 69th tournament victory so one can understand that the lovely couple had something extra to celebrate. Next week the entire tennis elite is meeting in New York to play in US Open. We might even be able to spot Drake sitting in the tribunes, who knows? Remember you can Live Stream US Open 2015...

Andy Murray on losing streak

Andy Murray has now lost an incredible 10 times against arch nemesis Roger Federer. Last time Andy Murray won over him was during the 2013 Australian Open. According to some, britains favorite tennis player must change his strategy if he is to beat Federer. It’s been a lot of ups and downs for Murray as we must remember that he beat the worlds number one in Montreal recently. One could attribute his severe losses to him spending double the hours on court than his opponent yet and Roger Federer said he did use Andy Murray’s mental fatigue in order to beat him. If anything is certain, we will experience a very intense US Open 2015 and you can Live Stream Andy Murray right...

Murray wins in Montreal

On paper, this Rogers Cup final seemed like an impending defeat for Andy Murray, as he had to face the world’s number one, Novak Djokovic. An impossible win for the Scotsman that had previously lost all his last eight duels versus the notorious Djokovic. His latest victory was during the Wimbledon finals all the way back in 2013. But this time things happened differently, ninth time is the charm one could say as Murray won in three set with 6-4, 4-6, 6-3. All in all this was the ninth time that Murray got away with a win against the powerful Serbian tennis player that has won 19 matches in total against him. This victory means that he went up in the Rankings at a comfortable second place taking Roger Federer’s place as he did not compete in Rogers Cup. With this great achievement, Andy Murray has the best possible start on US Open that will begin by the end of the...

Game on! Sharapova back on the market

The hunt is back on. It was announced this weekend that the worlds biggest female sportsbrand, Maria Sharapova is single yet again as she broke up with Grigor Dimitrov after a year-long relationship. It was the 23 year old Bulgarian player that confirmed the rumors to be true. According to Tennis.com, Dimitrov said the following: “We experienced wonderful moments together. I wish her much happiness and success in life and in tennis.” Sharapova has been pretty quiet, however after her vacation to Montenegro, where Dimitrov didn’t come along, there hasn’t been that much doubt as to her actual commitment and the hunt for the long-legged Russian tennis player can begin once again. Much like the rest of the tennis playing elite, Maria Sharapova is on vacation at the moment, but she will be back on the courts halfway through August where she will be competing at the Rogers Cup in Canada. By the end of August, Maria Sharapova will of course be staying in New York where she will be getting ready for US Open, along with Serena Williams, Simona Halep, Petra Kvitová, Caroline Wozniacki and the rest of the top tennis...