Editor's note: This week, we looked at the road each of the eight singles players and eight doubles teams took to qualify for this year's GNP Seguros WTA Finals Cancun in Mexico.


Monday: No.1 Sabalenka | No.2 Swiatek

Tuesday: No.3 Gauff | No.4 Rybakina

Wednesday: No.5 Pegula | No.6 Jabeur

Thursday: No. 7 Vondrousova | No.8 Sakkari 


Monday: No.1 Gauff and Pegula | No.2 Hunter and Mertens

Tuesday: No.3 Aoyama and Shibahara | No.4 Krejcikova and Siniakova

Wednesday: No.5 Krawczyk and Schuurs | No.6 Siegemund and Zvonareva

Thursday: No.7 Dabrowski and Routliffe | No.8 Melichar-Martinez and Perez

Season at a glance

If there's any active doubles player who's proved she can win with anyone, it's Elise Mertens. The Belgian has won 18 doubles titles since 2017 with seven different partners, including three majors with two different partners. Now, she's qualified for her fifth WTA Finals with a fifth different partner.

Storm Hunter doesn't have quite the same history as Mertens, but over the past two years a similar diversity has been the hallmark of her results. Hunter finished 2022 as the doubles No.10, having played alongside eight different players throughout the season.

So when Mertens and Hunter joined forces for the first time in 2023, it made sense that they'd adapt well once again. Three quarterfinal finishes in their first three tournaments set the standard, and they hit their stride over summer to claim the Rome title and reach the Wimbledon final. Semifinal runs in Montreal and Cincinnati kept them in the hunt over the North American swing, which culminated in a second WTA 1000 trophy, in Guadalajara.

And like No.1 pair Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula, Mertens and Hunter been extremely consistent, with only two opening losses -- at the US Open and Beijing -- from 11 tournaments.

By the numbers

2023 win-loss record as a team: 27-10
Titles won as a team: Rome (1000), Guadalajara (1000)
Grand Slam record: Australian Open QF (l. Ruse/Kostyuk), Roland Garros R3 (l. Kudermetova/Samsonova), Wimbledon F (l. Hsieh/Strycova), US Open R1 (l. Collins/N.Kichenok)
Hunter ranking: 3
Mertens ranking: 5
Hunter previous WTA Finals appearances: None
Mertens previous WTA Finals appearances: 2018 QF (with Schuurs), 2019 RR (with Sabalenka), 2021 F (with Hsieh), 2022 W (with Kudermetova)

Notable stat

Hunter and Mertens are tied at one win apiece with No.1 team Gauff and Pegula in 2023. Gauff and Pegula won their first meeting 6-7(4), 7-5, [10-2] in the Miami quarterfinals, but Hunter and Mertens took revenge 6-4, 6-4 in the Rome final.