Originally Posted by Jem
I believe -- but am not 100 percent certain -- that the U.S. Open has a 30-plus year history of doing exactly this when a seed withdraws prior to the tournament. They simply put the new seeded player into the withdrawed player's spot in the draw. It's a terrible way to do a draw, but they've mostly done it that way for as long as I can remember. I remember way back in the early 1980s when Tracy Austin withdrew, and the same situation happened. Andrea Jaeger was the one basically screwed, as she was on the cusp of a higher seeding and wound up in a worse part of the draw. I think Jaeger felt that Austin stayed in the draw on purpose, so she would get a worse seeding position.
If that is the case, then I could live with it, although it's still silly.
Maybe Wimbledon and US Open always do this procedure, while the French Open actually change seeds. So maybe the GS organisers are