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 7 on the money list from each tour are Marion Bartoli (WTA) and In-Kyung Kim (LPGA).
MARION BARTOLI (France)
2013 Official WTA Prizemoney: $2,890,132
Best Results: WINNER Wimbledon, QF Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, QF Shenzhen Open, QF Open GDF Suez
Twitter: bartoli_marion (click)
Sometimes things are just meant to be. After Major disappointments, the Tennis Gods smile on a player. If you remove Wimbledon from the equation, 2013 was turning out to be a disappointing season for Marion Bartoli. Sure, there were a few quarterfinal appearances, but in some of those she had a first round bye. Except for Wimbledon, she never won more than 2 matches at any event, with a few first match losses as well. It had nothing to do with her talent. She is still a highly skilled player. It was just that she had reached a point where her body was breaking down. For a player who memorably hinted at possible future Major success when she fell to Venus Williams in the 2007 Wimbledon final, the window looked to be closing, if not closed altogether. But for a fortnight at the All-England Club in 2013, Marion captured the magic that she needed to propel her to the title that meant the most to her.
It should have a been the best of times for Marion Bartoli, and I suppose for a time it was. But the same problems she had at the beginning of the year persisted past Wimbledon. Her body just wouldn’t let her perform at a high level week in and week out anymore. At the Western & Southern Open, following a loss to Simona Halep, Marion announced her retirement. It was a shock to the tennis world. But in retrospect, if her array of physical ailments kept recurring, it was the perfect time to step away, as Wimbledon champion. I wish Marion all the best in her future endeavors. Not only was I a fan of her game, I even liked all her little idiosyncrasies between points (jumping around, practice swings, windshield wiper swinging while waiting for serves). Also, my all-time favorite women’s player is Monica Seles, and Marion’s style was patterned after Seles so I enjoyed watching Bartoli rip groundstrokes with two hands from both sides. There has been talk about Marion maybe coming back for Wimbledon in 2014, but she has recently put those rumors to rest, saying her back will not allow her to return to playing on tour. She’s done some World Team Tennis and she showed up for Nekker Cup, but those things are a far cry from the physical grind of being on tour. So as far as anybody knows Marion is retired and will stay retired. Again, I wish her all the best.
IN-KYUNG KIM (South Korea)
2013 Official LPGA Prizemoney: $1,125,389
Best Results: 2nd US Women’s Open, 2nd Kia Classic, T4 LPGA Lotte Championship presented by J Golf, T4 Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G, T5 CN Canadian Women’s Open, T5 ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer, 6th, North Texas LPGA Shootout, T7 Lorena Ochoa Invitational presented by Banamex, T10 Honda LPGA Thailand
Facebook: In-Kyung Kim (click)
After 3 straight years finishing in top 10 on the year end money list, In-Kyung Kim slipped back to 26th in 2012. She also dropped to 2oth in scoring. Those are not bad numbers at all, but not up to the best of Inky. I wonder how much of that had to do with some shaky play after her heartbreaking 2nd place at the 2012 Kraft Nabisco Championship, where she was a foot away from Major glory. No worries, Inky bounced back with a strong 2013 season. She ascended to 7th place on the money list and scoring list. Her 70.49 average was the best of her LPGA career.
Although she didn’t win in 2013, Inky earned a 2nd place finish in a Major for the second consecutive year, this time at the US Women’s Open. She also finished runner-up in a playoff at the Kia Classic. A deadly accurate player, finishing 4th in driving accuracy, Inky finished in the top 10 9 times as well as 15 top 25 finishes. I’ve said it before and I’ll repeat myself here. After what happened at KNC 2012, and considering what a delightful and charitable person In-Kyung Kim seems to be off the course, there is no player I root for to win a Major more than Inky. I hope 2014 sees that happen.
SELECTED 2013 PICS OF MARION BARTOLI and IN-KYUNG KIM
ALL PICS CLICK TO ENLARGE