Instead of a year in review focusing on overall achievements, I thought this time I’d do a countdown of the top 30 money list leaders from the WTA and LPGA. For the WTA, singles, doubles and mixed are combined for this top 30. Number 15 on the money list from each tour are Sloane Stephens (WTA) and Lizette Salas (LPGA).
SLOANE STEPHENS (United States)
Singles: $1,430,121 Doubles: $4,987 Mixed: $2,500
2013 Official WTA Prizemoney: $1,498,608 (includes $61,000 as WTA Tour Championships second alternate)
Best Results: SF Australian Open, QF Wimbledon, SF Moorilla Hobart International, QF Brisbane International, QF Brussels Open, QF New Haven Open at Yale, QF Generali Ladies Linz, QF BGL BNP Paribas Luxembourg Open
It was a statement year for Sloane Stephens. The statement is, she’s coming. Some might say she’s already arrived. She took out Serena Williams at the Australian Open to announce herself to a greater mainstream sports audience. To be honest, she had Victoria Azarenka in the midst of a panic attack until Vika pulled a veteran move and took a bit of an off the court, locker room regrouping. However, while many point to her semifinal run in Melbourne, my thoughts center around her quarterfinal run at Wimbledon. Had she been able to get past eventual champion Marion Bartoli, there was nobody left in the semis that she was incapable of beating.
But she didn’t get by Marion. That’s ok. It was still a tremendous year for Sloane Stephens; a couple of semis, a handful of quarters, round of 16s in the two Majors other than the Aussie and Wimbledon. Although she didn’t win a title in 2013, it was the kind of season that has fans of American tennis salivating at the thought of what the future holds for Sloane. My guess, lots and lots of trophies.
LIZETTE SALAS (United States)
2013 Official LPGA Prizemoney: $759,323
Best Results: 6th Ricoh Women’s British Open, 2nd LPGA Lotte Championship, 3rd Safeway Classic, T4 RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup, T6 Kia Classic, T7 Lorena Ochoa Invitational, T8 Honda LPGA Thailand
There was certainly no sophomore slump for Lizette Salas in 2013. Her second year on the LPGA tour far surpassed her first, amassing 7 of her 8 career LPGA top 10s, including a 6th place finish at the Ricoh Women’s British Open. She also just narrowly missed a top 10 at the Evian Championship, settling for an 11th place tie. She’s not very long, but she has good accuracy. More importantly, when she has a chance to score, she comes through. Her putts per GIR ranked 3rd on tour in 2013. Also 6th in rounds under par, Lizette seems poised to break through with a win if she can keep up this level of play.
Lizette made her Solheim Cup debut in 2013, adding a point to the American tally. Although the European team went on to win, I still look at the young American Solheim Cup members, including Lizette, as hopeful fixtures on tour, winning many trophies in the coming years. I also just love Lizette’s background story. A player like her is very easy to root for. Whenever that first LPGA win comes, and it will come, I will be among those cheering the loudest.
SELECT 2013 PICS OF SLOANE STEPHENS and LIZETTE SALAS