ST PETERSBURG, Fla. -- The WTA announced Thursday Jessica Pegula and the doubles teams of Lyudmyla Kichenok and Jelena Ostapenko and Veronika Kudermetova and Elise Mertens have qualified for the 2022 WTA Finals.
This will be Pegula's debut appearance at the WTA Finals. She joins World No.1 Iga Swiatek and Ons Jabeur in the singles draw for the season-ending tournament, with five qualification places remaining.
Kichenok and Ostapenko, along with Kudermetova and Mertens, will also be making their debuts as a team at the WTA Finals. Defending champions Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova, in addition to Gabriela Dabrowski and Giuliana Olmos, already secured their qualification and only four places now remain in the doubles draw for Fort Worth.
Pegula has enjoyed a breakout year. She reached the biggest final of her career, at the WTA 1000 Mutua Madrid Open, and made two additional semifinals at the WTA 1000 level, at the Miami Open presented by Itaú and the National Bank Open presented by Rogers (Toronto). In addition, Pegula made the quarterfinals at three of this season's Grand Slams, at the Australian Open, Roland Garros and the US Open, the latter propelling her to a new career-high ranking of No.5 (Sept. 12).
Her qualification for the WTA Finals was secured following her win Wednesday against CoCo Vandeweghe at the San Diego Open.
Jelena Ostapenko and Lyudmyla Kichenok will be appearing at the WTA Finals in doubles for the first time in their careers. They have won two titles, at the WTA 1000 Western & Southern in Cincinnati and WTA 250 Rothesay Classic Birmingham. The pair reached an additional set of finals at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships and the Rothesay International Eastbourne, both at WTA 500 level.
Both posted new career-high rankings in doubles this season on Sept. 12, Kichenok at No.9 and Ostapenko at No.7. Ostapenko has WTA Finals experience in singles, contesting the group stage in 2017.
Elise Mertens has qualified for her fourth consecutive WTA Finals. She appeared in 2018 (with Demi Schuurs), 2019 (with Aryna Sabalenka) and 2021 (with Hsieh Su-Wei, reaching the final), while partner Veronika Kudermetova is appearing at the season-ending event for the first time. The team has reached four finals this season, winning the WTA 500 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships and contesting the title match at WTA 1000 events at the Qatar TotalEnergies Open (Doha) and Miami Open and the WTA 250 Libema Open (‘s-Hertogenbosch).
The pair reached a three additional semifinals this season, at the Australian Open, WTA 1000 Western & Southern Open (Cincinnati) and the Toray Pan Pacific Open (Tokyo). Kudermetova rose to No.2 in the world on June 6, while Mertens is a former World No.1 in doubles, who ascended to the top spot for the first time on May 10, 2021.
The 2022 WTA Finals features the Top 8 singles players and doubles teams on the Race to the WTA Finals, competing in a round-robin format with the singles champion winning the WTA Finals Billie Jean King Trophy and the doubles champions earning the WTA Finals Martina Navratilova Trophy.
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