Caroline Wozniacki - Australian Open 2024

WTA Tour ‘operating in an amateur fashion’ claims Caroline Wozniacki’s father

The WTA Tour have received backlash from the father and coach of former world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, who revealed his daughter ‘will definitely not play next year’.

Wozniacki made her return to the tour in the latter stages of 2023, after initially retiring following the 2020 Australian Open and having two children.

Since then, the Dane has achieved best results of reaching the Indian Wells quarter-finals and the last-16 of the US Open, enabling her to climb up to world No.117.

However, this ranking is not high enough for Wozniacki to receive direct entry to Roland Garros and she was not a recipient of a wildcard from the tournament, with the 33-year-old electing to skip playing qualifying for the tournament.

And her father, Piotr Wozniacki, has hit out at the WTA Tour, “But isn’t it worth helping such a girl if she decided to come back? The WTA believes that it is operating in an amateur fashion in the largest professional women’s sport of all sports in the world. They sign contracts with the players and the players are obliged to do certain things under these contracts. And what do they get? Nothing, really nothing.”

Wozniacki has received wildcards for seven tournaments this year including the Australian Open, Indian Wells, the Miami Open and the Madrid Open.

Despite this, her father has criticised the lack of wildcard for his daughter at both the Italian Open and Roland Garros, where home players took priority.

“It turns out that when someone like Caroline Wozniacki comes back as Caroline Wozniacki and family, she is no longer welcome,” claimed Piotr. “The rules in tennis today are such that there is no longer a mandatory wild card for someone who was once in the top 20, had a long break and came back.”

He continued, “This card was really helpful for tennis players coming back after having a baby and for those coming back from serious injuries. And now Karolina [Wozniacki], Angelique Kerber or Naomi Osaka are dependent only on someone else’s decisions. Since last year, all wild cards are the property of the tournaments, and the WTA washes its hands of them. The effect?

“For the tournament in Rome, all the wild cards, and there were eight of them, were given to Italians. I understand promoting your players, but how can you give the right to play in a tournament of this rank to girls who shouldn’t even think about playing in a WTA 1000 tournament?”

It is currently unclear as to whether Wozniacki will be awarded wildcards for the grass court season, but her father has admitted that she will play qualifying for Wimbledon if they also decide not to.

On top of this, Piotr Wozniacki revealed that his daughter will not continue her career into 2025, “And I will tell you that Caroline will definitely not play next year. We have already decided this. Because there’s no point in going through something like that. They don’t take us seriously, so it’s a waste of our efforts.

“We will survive until the end of this season, until the last Grand Slam tournament, the US Open, and then we will leave it at that. We’ll see what happens with Wimbledon along the way. Before that, Caroline will try to play a tournament, maybe they will let us in. And at Wimbledon, if Caroline does not get a wild card, we will play qualifiers.”

Piotr completed his passionate statement by explaining that he hoped that it would provide awareness for other WTA players before they thinking of having children mid-career, “Maybe using Caroline’s example we will be able to understand that it is not easy to decide to start a family during your career. Petra Kvitova, among others, is now pregnant, and in general, other tennis players decide to do so, thinking that if Wozniacki, Kerber or Osaka have given birth and returned, they will do the same.”

The 61-year-old concluded, “But the truth is that they don’t know what they will return to. For me, it is completely incomprehensible that players who have done something, achieved something, showed character and certainly attracted some fans to this sport can be treated so badly after their return.”

Inside the baseline…

It is a tricky situation to comment on when you don’t know the complete ins and outs, but it does seem a little entitled from Piotr Wozniacki. Although Caroline Wozniacki is a former world No.1 and Australian Open champion, she has only ever reached the quarter-finals at Roland Garros. On top of this, Caroline Wozniacki has received numerous wildcards this season and a tournament is more than entitled to prioritise home players – and qualifying was always available for the Dane.

READ NEXT: Dominic Thiem admits he ‘didn’t deserve’ Roland Garros wildcard

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.