The WTA Finals is the season-ending tournament on the WTA Tour and represents a final chance for the leading lights of the women's game to finish the campaign on a high.
After the four Grand Slam events - the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open - the WTA Finals is regarded as the most lucrative prize on the women's tour with the top eight players in the rankings competing for a big purse and a prestigious title.
But on the back of a long, gruelling season, it is a tournament that can throw up some strange results and that has been evident in the last two years with Garbine Muguruza crowned champion in 2021 and Caroline Garcia winning the event last year.
However, the 2023 tournament was won by pre-event favourite Iga Swiatek, who demolished Jessica Pegula 6-1 6-0 in the final to reclaim the WTA's no.1 ranking.
|When||TBC but expected to be Sunday 27th October - Sunday 3rd November 2024|
The 2024 WTA Tour schedule is yet to be confirmed, but based on previous years the 2024 WTA Finals will start on Sunday 27th October, with the final taking place a week later on Sunday 3rd November.
The venue for the 2024 WTA finals is still to be revealed, but Saudi Arabia is heavily rumoured to be the next permanent destination for this currently nomadic event which took place in Singapore from 2014 to 2018, with subsequent editions staged in China, Mexico (twice) and the United States.
The 2023 WTA Finals took place at a temporary venue in Cancun, Mexico, where the WTA Tour came under fire for inadequate facilities, while the final had to be moved to Monday following thunderstorms which washed out most of the weekend.
The top eight singles players and doubles teams in the WTA rankings qualify automatically for the WTA Finals based on their results during the year.
In both the singles and doubles competitions there are two groups of four with players or teams playing three matches in a round-robin format.
The top two players or teams from each group then progress to the knockout stage with two semi-finals followed by a final to decide the winner.
There are also two reserve players on standby in case injuries or illness rule out one of the chosen eight.
The WTA Finals was first staged in 1972 and five of the eight players involved were Americans, with fourth seed Chris Evert eventually being crowned champion.
It was originally called the Virginia Slims Championships but it was given a rebrand in 1995 and changed its name to the WTA Tour Championships.
Interestingly, from 1984 to 1998, the final in singles format was played over a best-of-five-set format with eight-time champion Martina Navratilova particularly profiting from that decision.
Navratilova is the most decorated player in WTA Finals history with eight titles, having triumphed in four successive years from 1983 to 1986.
Steffi Graf, who defeated Navratilova in the 1989 final, was a five-time winner of the event along with American great Serena Williams, who claimed her last title in 2014.
Since that triumph for Williams, there have been eight different champions crowned, with Swiatek the most recent name on the list.
The WTA Finals field is decided via the season-long Race to the WTA Finals rankings which take into account points accrued in all WTA Tour events from January onwards.
The top eight on the Race to the WTA Finals automatically qualify for the tournament while the players in ninth and tenth usually travel as reserves in the event of any injuries.