WTA introduces plan to help women players

Feb. 17, 2008 at 3:10 PM

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., Feb. 17 (UPI) -- The Women's Tennis Association has instituted an initiative designed to enhance player safety, health and well-being.

The tour said it wants to expand player support team education, dedicate athlete assistance staffing, and strengthen rules and procedures. The organization also will provide criminal background checks for people seeking access to secure player areas at tournament sites.

The last item comes in the wake of numerous player admissions about being asked to fix matches by bettors in men's tennis.

"The tour's first priority and responsibility is the health and well-being of our athletes, and these steps represent the culmination of a comprehensive analysis aimed at ensuring a safe environment for players on tour," said WTA tour Chief Executive Officer Larry Scott.

A panel of international experts has analyzed the sport's environment and wants to avert the problems that allegedly affected the men's game.

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