ST. PETERSBURG, FL, USA – With just 10 days until the first edition of the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen, the player field for the season’s most prestigious event is almost complete as 2018 WTA Finals champion Elina Svitolina takes the seventh spot in singles, and the teams of Anna-Lena Groenefeld / Demi Schuurs and Barbora Krejcikova / Katerina Siniakova round out the doubles field.
Only one precious spot remains in singles as three players are in contention to play for the record-breaking US$14 million prize purse over the eight-day tournament to be held from October 27 to November 3, 2019. This year, both the singles players and doubles teams will compete in round robin matches to make it to the knockout rounds in the semi-finals and final.
The full roster of Shiseido WTA Finals Legend Ambassadors will also include some of the biggest names in women’s tennis – Agnieszka Radwanska, Martina Hingis, Mary Pierce, Alicia Molik, and Zheng Jie. Between the legends, they share 24 Grand Slam titles in singles and doubles, forming an illustrious line-up for the tournament as it settles in its new home. The WTA Legend Ambassador program is an integral initiative by the WTA and Gemdale Sports to bring fans greater opportunities to interact with some of the greatest names in women’s tennis through community and fan engagement activities, tennis clinics and more.
Judy Murray will also be joining the star-studded list as the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen Community Ambassador, as she will conduct sharing sessions for coaches, introduce tennis to the community at the grassroots level through the WTA Charities “Come Play” program and coaching clinics with the WTA Future Stars.
The WTA Future Stars will be hosted for the first time in Shenzhen, with 56 players in the Under-14 and Under-16 categories, including players from the Gemdale Academy. The program this year will take place over eight days and will feature players from 24 markets, expanding outside of the Asia-Pacific region and attracting participants from Canada, Great Britain and the USA.
Fabrice Chouquet, Co-Tournament Director of the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen and Managing Director of WTA Asia-Pacific, said, “We are getting so close to the first Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen and everyone is working full steam ahead to ensure that we bring a premium quality experience to the players, legends, and of course the fans, who are at the heart of everything that we do. We have settled in our new home of Shenzhen, China very nicely, and I am confident that this will be an unforgettable spectacle for everyone here and around the world.”
As the brightest stars in women’s tennis make their way to the dazzling city of Shenzhen, presenting partner Gemdale Group and its subsidiary, event operator Gemdale Sports, have pulled out all the stops to introduce the city to the world, and to welcome the sport’s elite to one of the fastest-growing cities in the world. To be held at the Shenzhen Bay Sports Center, the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen is supported by the Shenzhen Municipal Government and Nanshan District Government and the China Tennis Association, alongside title sponsor Shiseido, presenting sponsors Gemdale Group and Kaisa, as well as longstanding partners of the WTA such as iQIYI, Porsche, Rolex, SAP and Wilson.
“The moment for us to showcase Shenzhen to the world is almost upon us, and together with the WTA, my team at Gemdale has been working hard to make sure that we deliver an event that will be the highlight of the 2019 global sports calendar. It is our pride and joy to be able to host the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen and to have some of the best athletes in the world to compete in this incredible city. I look forward to welcoming everyone to Shenzhen and I hope amazing memories will be created here,” said Eddy Liu, Co-Tournament Director of the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen and CEO of Gemdale Sports.
Aside from the exhilarating tennis action on Center Court, there will also be satellite fan villages in Shenzhen at popular spots like Sea World in Shekou, Gemdale School in Pingshan and One Avenue in Futian to bring the tennis action closer to the fans. The official opening ceremony is also set to enthrall spectators with performances including a cultural lion dance tradition, a mini-concert by local popular singer Bibi Zhou, and 3D-projected animation to introduce Shenzhen, China to the world.
The Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen Center Court will also be a remarkable set-up that will showcase the excellence and prowess of the top players of the 2019 WTA season. Featuring an LED screen that measures almost 40 meters wide and has a surface of 442 square meters, the fans will be treated to a fresh and premium viewing experience both in the stadium and from wherever they are watching the matches. The “Sparks Will Fly” brand elements used throughout the event will bring to life the energy, dynamism and electric momentum as the best in women’s tennis converge in Shenzhen.
Tickets to the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen are on sale at ShiseidoWTAFinalsShenzhen.com where fans can also visit for latest updates on the event.
The current Porsche Race to Shenzhen Leaderboard as of Monday, October 14, stands at:
1 [AUS] Ashleigh Barty
2 [CZE] Karolina Pliskova
3 [JPN] Naomi Osaka
4 [ROU] Simona Halep
5 [CAN] Bianca Andreescu
6 [CZE] Petra Kvitova
7 [UKR] Elina Svitolina
8 [USA] Serena Williams
1 [BEL] [BLR] Elise Mertens / Aryna Sabalenka
2 [CZE] [TPE] Barbora Strycova / Su-Wei Hsieh
3 [FRA] [HUN] Kristina Mladenovic / Timea Babos
4 [CHN] [CAN] Yifan Xu / Gabriela Dabrowski
5 [TPE] [TPE] Latisha Chan / Hao-Ching Chan
6 [CZE] [CZE] Barbora Krejcikova / Katerina Siniakova
7 [AUS] [CHN] Samantha Stosur / Shuai Zhang
8 [GER] [NED] Anna-Lena Groenefeld / Demi Schuurs