MONTREAL - WTA Tour players were advised Wednesday not to boycott the Athens Olympics, but bonus points might be withdrawn if two qualified German players are left out of the games.
Larry Scott, CEO of the Tour, met with about 30 players bound for the Olympics at the Rogers Cup tournament to discuss the German Olympic Committee's decision to keep Anca Barna and Marlene Weingartner off its team. Weingartner lives in Wesley Chapel and trains at Saddlebrook.
Some players this week suggested an Olympic boycott if the two players were not included.
"I made it clear to the players that missing the Olympics - not playing in the Olympics - is not in the interests of women's professional tennis and our sport in general," Scott said.
He said the WTA would consider not awarding Tour points, which count toward players' rankings, if an agreement is not reached before the deadline for entries this week. Scott said he would continue to lobby the International Olympic Committee and the International Tennis Federation to pressure the Germans to revise their qualifying standards.
Barna and Weingartner, Germany's top two women players, were ranked 46th and 52nd, respectively, on the July 15 list of entrants. However, Germany set its own standards - players must have reached the final of a Tier-1 tournament or the semifinals of a grand slam event to qualify.
Scott said the Germans were "unfair" because they made an exception for one of their male players, Florian Mayer, after he reached the quarterfinals at Wimbledon.
MEN'S TENNIS: Guillermo Coria of Argentina will skip the Athens Games because of a right shoulder injury, his trainer said.
COSTS: Greece's costs will top $7.2-billion, deputy finance minister Petros Doukas said. Some analysts predict the final price could climb to $12.5-billion and burden taxpayers for at least a decade.
CYCLING: A federal judge will consider Friday whether mountain bike racer Susan Haywood should be restored to the U.S. team. USA Cycling originally said Haywood would compete in the mountain bike race because she led U.S. athletes in the International Cycling Union rankings. But rider Mary McConneloug protested that Haywood's ranking was calculated improperly, and an arbitrator agreed with McConneloug, who then was named to the lone spot.