The women’s year in numbers – the best stats from the 2017 WTA Tour

Charlie Eccleshare

As another tennis year comes to a close, Telegraph Sport looks at the numbers behind the 2017 WTA Tour. All stats are courtesy of the WTA 

The serving stars

Britain’s Johanna Konta was arguably the best in class here, as she topped both percentage of service games won (79.3) and second serve points won (50.6 per cent).

When it came to total aces for the year, Karolina Pliskova was top of the leaderboard with 452. Pliskova also served the most aces in a match – banging down 21 against Dominika Cibulkova in the Doha semi-final. Britain’s Naomi Broady was second in this category, registering 19 against Daria Gavrilova in the Australian Open first round.

Petra Kvitova meanwhile had the highest proportion of first serve points won with 74 per cent, and it was another Czech player Lucie Safarova who was the best clutch server of 2017, saving 64 per cent of the break points she faced.

On the debit side, Jelena Ostapenko served the highest number of double faults in 2017, with 380 – some way clear of second-placed Kristina Mladenovic’s 337.

Returning with interest

The Italian Sara Errani was the pack leader for return of serve, topping the charts for return games won (48.8 per cent), return points won (49.2 per cent) and break points converted (53.8 per cent).

Ostapenko also underlined why in her matches a hold of serve is often more valuable than a break – her match against Venus Williams in Singapore for instance included 21 service breaks – by winning 46.4 per cent of her returning games (the second most on Tour after Errani).

The main winners

The overall winner for 2017, purely in terms of match wins, was Caroline Wozniacki (60). The Dane also claimed the most wins on a hard court (41).

The best grass-court player of 2017 was Konta (13 match wins), while Kiki Bertens claimed comfortably the most clay-court wins (24).

Ostapenko won the most three-set matches, just edging Wozniacki by 19 to 18, while Elina Svitolina won the most titles with five.

Big-game players

Not only did Wozniacki record the most match wins, she also consistently demonstrated that she was the player for the big occasion. No-one won more matches against top-10 or top-five opponents than Wozniacki, who claimed 14 victories against the former, and eight against the latter.

For top-five wins though, Wozniacki was tied with Svitolina, who posted a hugely impressive 8-1 win/loss record in those matches. Svitolina even held a match point on the one occasion she was beaten by a top-five player, which was the French Open quarter-final defeat to Simona Halep.

Victory for Ukraine

The USA may have won this year’s Fed Cup, but the nation with the most WTA title wins to its name was…a tie between Ukraine and the Czech Republic, both on eight. It was a moral victory for Ukraine though, who helped by Svitolina’s flawless 5-0 record, won all eight of the finals their players contested.

Last woman standing

No prizes for guessing who won the longest match of the year…it was of course the iron woman Svetlana Kuznetsova. The Russian’s 6-4, 5-7, 9-7 win over Jelena Jankovic in the Australian Open third round lasted 3hrs 36mins, making it just two minutes shorter than the epic final at the same tournament between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

For total games played, the longest match was the nerve-shredding Wimbledon second round between Konta and Donna Vekic, which eventually went the Brit’s way 7-6, 4-6, 10-8. The longest tie-break was won 17-15 by Yanina Wickmayer against Amra Sadikovic at the Nuremberg Cup in May.

One for the future

The youngest title winner of 2017 was, by a margin of more than two years, Marketa Vondrousova, who was 17 and nine months when she won the Biel Ladies Open final in April. Remarkably it was only the Czech’s second WTA event, and with a ranking of No 233, Vondrousova was comfortably the lowest-ranked title winner of 2017.

The best stats from the 2017 ATP Tour

Still got it

On the other side of the age scale, the oldest title winner of the year was the Italian veteran Francesca Schiavone after her victory in Bogota aged 36 years and nine months. Now 37, the 2010 French Open champion Schiavone has shelved plans to retire and will continue into 2018.

Worst beatings

There were nine double-bagel defeats in 2017, but only one at the grand slams. The unfortunate recipient was the Canadian Francoise Abanda, who was beaten 6-0, 6-0 by Wozniacki at the French Open.

Entirely arbitrarily

The seed that won the most events in 2017 was…the No 2 seed, with nine. Incidentally there were 24 unseeded champions during the year.

So there you go.

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