Irked Serena slams rankings system

Irked Serena slams rankings system

American mocks Dinara Safina as worlds number one player

Sister act: Serena Williams (left) and Venus pose with the women’s doubles trophy on Saturday. Reuters

The American was all smiles on court after beating elder sister Venus 7-6, 6-2 to win her third Wimbledon crown and she doubled up in laughter when asked to explain why Dinara Safina, yet to win a Grand Slam title, held the number one ranking.

“I think Dinara did a great job to get to number one — she won (non Grand Slam titles in) Rome and Madrid,” Serena, who took her Grand Slam tally to 11, said to hoots of laughter.

“I think if you hold three Grand Slam titles maybe you should be number one but not on the WTA Tour obviously, so... You know, my motivation is maybe just to win another Grand Slam and stay number two, I guess,” she grinned.

Serena has every right to feel baffled after she added the Wimbledon crown to the US and Australian Open titles she has won in the past 10 months. Safina on the other hand has been rewarded by a system that appears to value consistency rather than the quality of tournaments won. “I would go crazy just thinking about it. I think anyone really could,” said the 27-year-old. “I'd rather definitely be number two and hold three Grand Slams in the past year than be number one and not have any. I don't know what to do to be number one. I don't even care anymore. “I think the girl, Dinara, who is number one, you can clearly see by her physique how hard she works. You can't get anywhere by not doing the best and not working your hardest. So I'm happy for her (but) I'm really excited that I won Wimbledon.”

Safina did herself no favours when she was walloped 6-1, 6-0 in the Wimbledon semifinals by Venus. According to WTA records, the result was the most lopsided win over a current world number one at a Grand Slam event. In his last address as WTA chief, Larry Scott defended the system.

“The ranking system is designed sort of around king or queen of the hill — who is the strongest, most consistent performer over the year,” he said. “While I know it does stir debate, the one place it doesn't stir a debate is in the locker room. The players believe in that ranking system.”

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