Venus Williams, thought to be considering retirement, was the first player chosen today in the DuPont World TeamTennis marquee player draft.
Williams was selected by the St Louis Aces. Others drafted included reigning US Open champion Serena Williams, Venus's sister, Monica Seles, Mary Pierce and Jim Courier.
Last week, Richard Williams said his 19-year-old daughter Venus was thinking about retiring from tennis, and that Serena might follow when her contract with Puma runs out in three years.
A WTT spokesman today said that the Williams sisters signed contracts to play in the league, whose season runs July 10-30, with the championships to be held in late August. Both Williams sisters and Pierce will play just twice, while Courier and Seles are scheduled to play in four matches.
Pierce was the second player chosen, by the Kansas City Explorers, but then was traded to the Schenectady County (New York) Electrics for financial considerations.
Serena Williams was drafted by the Delaware Smash, while the New York Hamptons took Courier and the Hartford (Connecticut) FoxForce selected Seles.
Besides obtaining Pierce, Schenectady protected its league rights to Martina Navratilova.