With the help of Russian Vera Zvonareva and Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska losing early this week in tournament play, embattled former No. 1 Jelena Jankovic has secured the final spot in the eight-woman field for the 2009 WTA Tour Championships.
Jankovic, who had a stellar 2008 season, this year failed to compete for the top spot, blaming a too-hard training regiment in the off-season.
Jankovic will compete against the Top 7 qualifiers in Dinara Safina, Serena Williams, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Caroline Wozniacki, Elena Dementieva, Victoria Azarenka, and Venus Williams.
“I am really happy about making it to the Sony Ericsson Championships for the third time in my career,” said Jankovic. “It is always a nice feeling to end the season playing in the Championships as one of the best eight players in the world. I’m looking forward to returning to Doha and playing some great matches.”
The Williams sisters also qualified for the four-woman year-end doubles field for the first time, joining Cara Black/Liezel Huber, Nuria Llagostera Vives/Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, and Rennae Stubbs/Samantha Stosur.
When the WTA Tour Rankings are released on Monday, Oct. 26, Safina will be ranked No. 1 again and therefore will be the top seed at the season-ending event, replacing Serena Williams.
The WTA year-end championships were first played in 1972 and have been held in such notable venues as Madison Square Garden, New York City; the Olympiahalle in Munich; Staples Center in Los Angeles; and the Recinto Ferial Casa de Campo in Madrid. Former singles champions include Tracy Austin, Kim Clijsters, Chris Evert, Evonne Goolagong, Steffi Graf, Martina Hingis, Martina Navratilova, Gabriela Sabatini, Serena Williams, Justine Henin and Venus Williams.
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