ST. PETERSBURG, FL, USA - Serena Williams has clinched the WTA's Year-End World No.1 presented by Dubai Duty Free, her third time finishing a year on top after doing so in 2002 and 2009.
Williams has had an absolutely phenomenal season so far, putting together a 67-4 record and capturing nine WTA titles, including two Grand Slams (the French Open and US Open), six Premier-level titles (Brisbane, Miami, Charleston, Madrid, Rome and Toronto) and one International-level title (Bastad - her first International-level title). She returned to No.1 on February 18, becoming the oldest player ever to be No.1, and she has collected $9,077,322 in prize money on the season so far, blowing past the previous record of $7,923,920 that Victoria Azarenka set last year (with a month to go too).
The American's $3.6 million payout at the US Open was the largest payout in women's tennis history.
"Serena has proven time and time again throughout her career that she is an incredible champion, both on and off the court," WTA Chairman & CEO Stacey Allaster said of the news. "This season she continues to rewrite the record books, proving she is one of the sport's greatest athletes of all time."
"We are delighted to present Serena with the Year-End No.1 trophy, which signifies the terrific season that she has had in 2013. She is a great champion and we look forward to welcoming her back to Dubai in 2014," said Salah Tahlak, Senior Vice President Corporate Communications of Dubai Duty Free and Tournament Director for the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, a Premier-level event.
Williams is the seventh player since the inception of computer rankings in 1975 to finish three or more seasons at No.1, joining Steffi Graf (eight times), Martina Navratilova (seven times), Chris Evert (five times), Lindsay Davenport (four times), Justine Henin (three times) and Martina Hingis (three times).
Williams will be presented with her Year-End No.1 trophy during an on-court ceremony at the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships - Istanbul in just a few weeks, by a representative of Dubai Duty Free.