Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina forced to play qualifying at upcoming WTA event?



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Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina forced to play qualifying at upcoming WTA event?

Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina will likely have to play qualifying at the San Diego Open. Rybakina, the 25th-ranked player in the world, has signed up to compete at the WTA 500 event in San Diego. The San Diego Open features a star-studded player field, which includes top-ranked Iga Swiatek and six more top-10 players.

Rybakina is currently the fifth player on the alternates list.

The reason why Rybakina is still ranked outside the top-20 is because she wasn't rewarded for her WImbledon run. Had Rybakina been rewarded points for her Wimbledon victory, she would have likely now been ranked inside the top-10.

The San Diego Open is scheduled to take place between October 10-16. Unless Rybakina receives a wildcard or several players pull out, she would likely be forced to play qualifying in San Diego.

Rybakina unloaded on the WTA

During her pre-tournament press conference at the US Open, Rybakina called out the "weak WTA leadership" and said she wasn't feeling like a Wimbledon champion.

Since winning Wimbledon, there hasn't really been too much attention on Rybakina and she hasn't been getting the recognition and respect she probably deserved. “I would say it was great achievement for me,” Rybakina said.

“I’m super proud of my team, of course. (But) experience-wise, I would say it was not the greatest. I think this is the problem of the structure of the tour. Honestly, a bit weak leadership because we have so many things going on.

It was my dream to win Wimbledon. It’s pity. I feel like actually I’m not the Wimbledon champion. It takes time to realise, but when you’re going from tournament to tournament, this is how you feel in the end of the day."

This week, Rybakina is playing in Portoroz. On Wednesday, Rybakina defeated Tereza Martincova to set up a Portoroz quarterfinal versus Lesia Tsurenko. It remains to be seen if Rybakina will indeed have to play qualifying in San Diego.