ST PETERSBURG, FL, USA - Following a quarterfinal victory at the China Open, Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka has become the fifth qualifier for the inaugural Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen.
The Australian Open champion joins Ashleigh Barty, Karolina Pliskova, Simona Halep and Bianca Andreescu in the field for the year-end championships, slated to run from Oct. 27 - Nov. 3.
Osaka opened the 2019 season by etching her name into history as she lifted her second career Grand Slam title at the Australian Open.
Having also triumphed at 2018 US Open, she became the 10th woman to secure back-to-back US Open and Australian Open crowns, catapulting her up the rankings and naming her the first player from Japan - man or woman - to hold the World No.1 position.
The Japanese star captured her second title of the season on home soil at the Toray Pan Pacific Open (Osaka) and reached the semifinal stage on three occasions at Brisbane International, Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart and the China Open in Beijing, currently in progress.
The 2019 Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen marks Osaka’s second consecutive year qualifying for the season-ending event, making her the second-ever Japanese woman to qualify in consecutive years, and first in 25 years when Kimiko Date did so from 1994-96.
In 2015, Osaka competed at and won the WTA Rising Stars Invitational as part of the WTA Finals, introducing fans to the next generation of women's tennis stars at the WTA's biggest event of the year.
In the final, Osaka defeated Caroline Garcia on the same stage as the Top 8 singles and doubles players competed for the WTA Finals trophies.
The 2019 Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen features the world’s best players vying for a record-breaking US$14 million in prize money and two of the most prestigious titles in women’s tennis.
The Top 8 singles players and doubles teams on the Porsche Race to Shenzhen – which includes 53 WTA tournaments and four Grand Slams – will compete in a round-robin format with the singles champion lifting the Billie Jean King Trophy and the doubles champions earning the WTA Finals Martina Navratilova Trophy.
The winner of the Porsche Race to Shenzhen - the player who finishes in pole position leading into the WTA Finals - will not only seal a spot at the season-ending showpiece, but also be congratulated with a new Porsche.
The Porsche Race to Shenzhen Leaderboard is updated each Monday (every two weeks during Grand Slams events) and can be found at www.ShiseidoWTAFinalsShenzhen.com.
Tickets to the Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen are on sale at www.ShiseidoWTAFinalsShenzhen.com.