VMware Player is not built to run as a service. However, there are different discussions and possible solutions using srvany.exe.
If you google for site:vmware.com srvany player you will find some interesting posts for this issue.
I suspected as much Andre, we used to run Vmware server 1.0.4XX although I had to switch to VM player as it seemed to run the latest version of Fedora 11/12 i686 images with stability (however the builds are different so we can't use latest version of VM ware server to run hence these workarounds grrrrr....
I'll have a butcher at that google search