The Women's Tennis Association Finals are headed to Fort Worth October 31 – November 7. Here's what you need to know.
What Are The WTA Finals?
WTA is the international organizing body for women’s professional tennis and it stages most of the world’s pro tournaments for top female competitors. The Finals wraps up the season and features the top eight singles players and eight doubles teams based on their performances throughout the 2022 Hologic WTA Tour. So Fort Worth will host the very best women’s players.
When Are the WTA Finals?
The event begins Monday, October 31 and runs through Monday, November 7.
Where Are the WTA Finals?
Dickies Arena on Montgomery Street in Fort Worth will host all matches.
2022 marks the first time the WTA has held its finals in the United States since a 2002-2005 run in Los Angeles.
If you can’t make it to Fort Worth, Tennis Channel will carry all the matches, and also stream them via Tennis Channel Plus in the U.S., with other broadcasters picking it up worldwide.
Fans can purchase tickets through Ticketmaster or at the Dickies Arena box office. Tickets start at $20 each. Tickets can be purchased for single sessions or as a weeklong season pass that includes all matches. You can get a group ticket discount when you buy them in blocks of eight or more through the Dickies Arena box office.
The first four days offer a single session that begins at 3:00pm Central Daylight Time and includes two doubles and two singles matches. Friday through Sunday feature two sessions, one at 1:30pm and one at 7:00pm. Each session includes a singles match and a doubles match. Tournament champions will be determined Monday, November 7, during a single session beginning at 5:30pm.
Singles players earn a berth based on their best 16 tournament ranking point results during the current calendar year’s top tournaments. Doubles teams are selected by tallying their best 11 such performances. The tour measures ongoing qualification through the Race to the Finals Leaderboard.
Each set of eight competitors will compete in two round-robin groups of four. The two who win the most matches in each group qualify for the single-elimination semifinals. If there’s a tie within in a group, head-to-head results determine who goes through to the semis. For three-way ties, percentage of sets won, then percentage of games won, and, finally, who ranked higher on the Race to the Finals Leaderboard.
On the singles side, world number one Iga Swiatek of Poland won two Slams this season along with multiple other tournaments. She and world number two Ons Jabeur secured Finals spots relatively easily. Determining the rest of the field came down to the end.
The eight women who will compete in the singles draw:
(No. 1) Iga Swiatek – French Open and US Open champion; Won eight titles in 2022
(No. 2) Ons Jabeur – Won two titles in 2022; Finalist at Wimbledon, US Open
(No. 3) Jessica Pegula – American closed regular season with title in Guadalajara last week
(No. 4) Coco Gauff – 18-year-old American at highest career ranking; French Open finalist
(No. 5) Maria Sakkari – Four-time finalist in 2022; Clinch last Finals berth last week
(No. 6) Caroline Garcia – Won three titles this season: Owns 10 for her career
(No. 7) Aryna Sabalenka – Two-time finalist this season; US Open semifinalist
(No. 8) Daria Kasatkina – Won a pair of titles in 2022; French Open semifinalist
Reigning WTA Finals doubles champions Barbora Krejčíková and Katerina Siniaková became the first team to qualify this season. The final team to qualify, Anna Danilina and Beatriz Haddad Maia, had to defeat Krejčíková and Siniaková on October 22nd in the semifinals of the WTA tournament in Guadalajara to barely claim the last spot in the finals.
The 16 players in the doubles draw:
Barbora Krejcikova & Katerina Siniakova – Defending champions; Won three Majors in 2022
Garbriela Dabrowski & Giuliana Olmos – Claimed one title from three finals this season
Coco Gauff & Jessica Pegula – Both in singles; Won three titles, reached French Open final; both also qualified in singles
Veronika Kudermetova & Elise Mertens – Claimed one title from four finals this season
Lyudmyla Kichenok & Jelena Ostapenko – Won a pair of titles from four finals this season
Yifan Xu & ZhaoxuanYang – Claimed two titles together in 2022
Anna Danilina & Beatriz Haddad Maia – Australian Open finalists; Claimed one title in 2022
Desirae Krawcyk & Demi Schuurs – Reached two finals this season, claiming one title
No American player has won the singles in this tournament since Serena Williams took three straight from 2012-2014. Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond took the United States’ last doubles crown in 2011. The last American pair to appear in the tournament was Raquel Kops-Jones and Abigail Spears in 2015 – until Gauff and Pegula became the fifth team to join the 2022 field after a win in the San Diego tournament
They made the final in Paris at Roland Garros, won a WTA 1000 title Toronto, and were also victors at the WTA 500 event in Doha. This will be the first time either has played in the Finals in singles or doubles.
Pegula just won in Guadalajara, defeating Sakkari in the straight sets in the singles final so she has some momentum coming into the Finals (Gauff made the quarters). They made the quarterfinals in doubles in Mexico. Both are considered strong candidates to do well in the singles competition and either could become the first American since Martina Navratilova in 1986 to win both singles and doubles in the same Finals.
Former Fort Worth resident Martina Navratilova holds the records for both singles and doubles wins at the finals – eight singles and 13 with partners Betty Stöve, Billie Jean King, and Pam Shriver.
The WTA held its first Finals in 1972 as a singles-only tournament and Floridian Chris Evert won the first of her four titles that year. American Rosemary Casals partnered with Australian Margaret Court to win the inaugural doubles competition the next year.
Besides Navratilova, Martina Hingis of Switzerland is the only other player to have won the two events in the same year, when she partnered with Russian Anna Kournikova to win the doubles while also defeating Monica Seles in the individual event final.
Garbine Muguruza defeated Anett Kontaveit 6-3, 7-5 to win last year’s singles event, which was contested in Guadalajara, Mexico. The COVID pandemic forced the cancellation of the 2020 tournament.
The participants at Dickies Arena will each receive a share of a $5,000,000 purse. Each player receives a base amount of prize money for playing in the tournament, plus additional cash for each win. An undefeated singles titlist could walk away with $1.68 million.
The Surface and The Ball
While playing on the Dickies Arena rodeo dirt might have added an intriguing element of unpredictability, the WTA has elected to contest this tournament on a hard court surface. They will use the Wilson US Open Regular Duty ball.