SOFIA, Bulgaria - Four Top 20 players - including Grand Slam champions Ana Ivanovic and Sam Stosur - will be among eight players competing at the $750,000 Garanti Koza WTA Tournament Of Champions, to be staged next week from Tuesday, October 29 to Sunday, November 3, 2013. This marks the second year that Sofia will host the annual season-ending championships for the WTA's International tournaments, after a highly successful debut staging at the Arena Armeec 12 months ago.
Ivanovic, a two-time champion of the event when it was held in Bali, was awarded a wildcard into this year's field. Stosur is among the six highest-ranked winners of International level titles, along with Simona Halep, Maria Kirilenko, Elena Vesnina, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Alizé Cornet. Bulgaria's own Tsvetana Pironkova has again received a wildcard to compete in front of her home fans, and will be looking to produce another strong showing following her semifinal run at the event last year.
Initially the players will be split into two groups of four for the round robin competition, with each group's top two finishers advancing to the semifinals, where the draw goes into elimination round format.
"We are delighted to have such a strong player field for the second staging of the Garanti Koza WTA Tournament Of Champions Sofia," said Stefan Tzvetkov, President of the Bulgarian Tennis Federation and Tournament Director in the Bulgarian capital. "We look forward to welcoming these stars of women's tennis to Bulgaria, where everyone has high expectations for another fantastic event."
This year's Road To Sofia comprised 30 International events on six continents. Last year's Tournament Of Champions attracted more than 30,000 fans over six days of competition, with host broadcaster BNT reporting average daily viewership of nearly 2.8 million households in a country with a population of 7.4 million. Matches were broadcast to more than 25 countries and Nadia Petrova won the title.
Turkish construction company Garanti Koza recently became the event's title sponsor for 2013-2014.