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 5 on the money list from each tour are Agnieszka Radwanska (WTA) and So-Yeon Ryu (LPGA).
AGNIESZKA RADWANSKA (Poland)
2013 Official WTA Prizemoney: $3,118,332
Best Results: WINNER ASB Classic, WINNER Apia International Sydney, WINNER KDB Korea Open, RUNNER-UP Bank of the West Classic, SF Wimbledon, QF Roland Garros, QF Australian Open, SF Qatar Total Open, SF Sony Open, SF Rogers Cup, SF China Open, QF Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, QF Southern California Open, QF Western & Southern Open, QF Toray Pan Pacific Open
Facebook: AgnieszkaRadwanska1 (click)
Website: agaradwanska.com (click)
Twitter: ARadwanska (click)
Agnieszka Radwanska started 2013 on fire, winning back to back titles at Auckland and Sydney. She put such a crushing double bagel loss on Dominika Cibulkova in the Sydney final, it would take the Slovakian star some time to mentally recover (although Dominika would get a measure of revenge later in the year in the Bank of the West Classic final). Aga reached the quarterfinals of the Australian Open for the third straight year and fourth time overall. She had her best ever finish at Roland Garros, reaching the quarters. The one Major in 2013 that will probably haunt Aga is Wimbledon. The path was open for her to win with other top seeds falling earlier than expected. She had Sabine Lisicki down 0-3 in the third set before Sabine stormed back to win 9-7 to advance to the final. Had Aga held onto the final set lead and defeated Lisicki, she would have been a huge favorite to beat Marion Bartoli, whom she has never lost to in 7 career matches. In fact, after dropping the first set in their head to head matchups, Aga had won the last 14 straight sets. Wimbledon was there for the taking, but unfortunately for Radwanska, it slipped away.
But let’s focus on the positive, because there were plenty of positives in Aga’s year. 3 more WTA titles give her 13 career singles titles. She was also runner up in Stanford. Beyond that, she was a near constant fixture in quarters and semis throughout the year. All that’s really left for Aga to accomplish is winning a Major. Her consistently solid play will continue to afford her chances as she often goes deep in tournaments. Tennis fans showed their appreciation for Aga by voting her WTA Fan Favorite for the third consecutive year. She was also voted as having the best shot of the year, a spinning shot at the Sony Open.
SO-YEON RYU (South Korea)
2013 Official LPGA Prizemoney: $1,278,864
Best Results: 2nd Kraft Nabisco Championship, 3rd US Women’s Open, T4, The Evian Championship, 2nd Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G, T3 Honda LPGA Thailand, 3rd Lorena Ochoa Invitational presented by Banamex, T4 North Texas LPGA Shootout, 8th Kingsmill Championship, T9 CME Group Titleholders, T10 Reignwood LPGA Classic
Instagram: 1SoYeonRyu (click)
Twitter: 1soyeonryu (click)
So-Yeon Ryu showed that she had the talent to win on the LPGA when while still a member of the KLPGA, she came to America and won the US Women’s Open in 2011. Joining the LPGA Tour in 2012, she proved she could handle the week in and week out grind of being on tour while so far from home, not only winning the 2012 Jamie Farr Toledo Classic but also capturing the Louise Suggs Rookie of the Year award. In 2013, she continued to demonstrate that she is a player with the game to play well for years to come. She didn’t capture a win. In fact, she is the highest ranked player on either of the money lists I’m counting down (WTA and LPGA) without a win. But that’s not necessarily a negative. Seen from a positive point of view, it’s validation of how consistently well she played all year.
Her closest chance to win came when she fell just short in a playoff to eventual Player of the Year Inbee Park at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G. Also especially impressive was how often So-Yeon performed well in Majors. She finished in the top 5 in 3 Majors; the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the US Women’s Open and the Evian Championship. Although not terribly long off the tee or a chalk line type player in accuracy, her short game was stellar, helping her to finish 2nd in greens in regulation. If she tightens up her putting a bit in 2014, she will turn some of her close calls into wins. However, even if she doesn’t do that and just keeps doing what she’s doing, that will be more than good enough to place her among the top handful of women’s golfers in the world.
SELECTED 2013 PICS OF AGNIESZKA RADWANSKA and SO-YEON RYU
ALL PICS CLICK TO ENLARGE