World No. 2 Serena Williams bombed out of the WTA stop in Madrid on Monday, retiring with a leg injury trailing unseeded Italian Francesca Schiavone 6-4.
The younger Williams sister complained that she is forced to play events, even while injured, to avoid being fined by the WTA Tour.
“I don’t know about you, but 75,000 is a lot of money to me,” said Williams on being fined for potentially skipping Madrid. “I’m redecorating a house and $75,000 is my furniture budget…I can’t just go writing cheques for $75,000 in this economy.”
Williams has now lost her last four matches since the Miami final.
“I wanted to do well here, but I was really hindered and I didn’t want it to get worse. I didn’t want to risk my chances to play Roland Garros,” Williams said. “It’s something that has bothered me in the previous weeks. It’s always hard to deal with things like this. I came here to compete and do my best. I planned on doing well. But you just live to fight another day, I guess.”
Williams was the only seeded upset on a day when No. 3 Elena Dementieva and No. 8 Nadia Petrova advanced into the third round, and No. 9 Caroline Wozniacki moved into the second round when opponent Shahar Peer retired with a foot injury.
Former No. 1 Amelie Mauresmo defeated Ai Sugiyama in her opener, and unseeded threats Patty Schnyder and Anna Chakvetadze won second round matches.
Tuesday highlights in Madrid are Jankovic vs. Hantuchova, V.Williams vs. Kleybanova, Lepchenko vs. Wozniacki, and Zheng vs. Mauresmo.
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