Oh the wonders of Youtube!
As soon as she retires, I get to see this for the first time. Typical
Looking back, I can understand why Seles wanted her ranking frozen, but you just cannot have a number one ranking frozen, with the number two spot the highest level to which a player can ascend. Rankings are purely for the media, and the women's game, sad as it was, had to move on and try to forget Seles so as every grandslam would not seem completely redundant, whereby attendances and sponsorships would drop.
I do think that they could have given her an assurance that if she came back within a certain amount of time, they would agree to freeze her ranking. But that's easily said; at that point, Seles was still recovering from the physical effects, still more so the emotional, and therefore time frames would not have done her recovery any good whatsoever.
Another way of viewing the affair retrospectively is to say that Seles, if she had really wanted her ranking frozen, could at least have given them an indication of when she was going to come back. For example, she could have said what she said in this video, that her finger was still affected by the wound, but that when she was ready she would resume training. But again, it's very easy to say that in hindsight when Seles was traumatised and STILL only nineteen years of age. What had happened to her was so cruel, and it must have taken her a long, long time to face it, as indicated by her unwillingness to look at the scar on her back.
But still, the whole tour could not wait indefinitely. Perhaps they could have
given her an assurance that she would be given a high seeding on her return, as a phenomenon who had dominated the tour for the last two to three years.
Maybe that would have provided her an incentive to return sooner. But the message such a gesture might have sent out would have been that the tour was only concerned with Seles returning in order to bolster its media appeal, as opposed to providing her the space and the time to deal with the attack in her own way.
It was a very delicate situation, which the tour did not initially handle well because of poor communication, but because Seles understandably felt aggrieved, it did not mean that her ranking could be frozen indefinitely.
...and just a reminder of how good she was. You can really guess which book Maria read from.