I've said it before and I'll keep saying it: why does she keep on playing Tier I events? She should start playing smaller tournaments. It would be much more fun to see her retire doing well in smaller tournaments than losing in Q1 in the big ones.
I think Els is just trying to get as much money as possible out of her last year. A first Q-round in a Tier1 is probably worth more as a 2nd round main draw in a tier5 + the tier 1 pays her a very luxurious stay in the players hotel as long as she's in the doubles draw.