Venus Williams, the oldest woman on the WTA tennis tour will bid for her first title of the season on Sunday, when she meets Caroline Wozniacki, ten years younger, in the WTA finals in Singapore.
Venus, 37, was a finalist at Wimbledon and Australia this year but has not won any trophy despite her efforts. And, if she wins the title,she will also become the first player since Gabriela Sabatini in 1994 to win the WTA Finals as her sole title of the year.
Through to the final after advancing with a 2-1 record out of the Group Stage, Venus is looking to become the eighth player to lose a match in the round robin stage and go on to win the WTA Finals title. It’s already happened three times in a row in Singapore: Serena Williams in 2014, Agnieszka Radwanska in 2015 and Dominika Cibulkova in 2016.
To get to the final stage, the American rallied from the disappointment of losing a tight first set to blast her way past Caroline Garcia 6-7(3) 6-2 6-3.
“Garcia competed so well in the whole tournament,” Williams said of an opponent who won back-to-back titles in China to sneak into the event as the last qualifier.
“Every time I thought I had her, she would play amazing shots… but it’s never over until the fat lady sings and I‘m not fat,” joked Williams, who won the tournament in 2008.
In the first semi-final, Denmark’s Wozniacki stood her ground in the face of some incredible early pressure before pinning down Karolina Pliskova with a 7-6(9) 6-3 victory that ensured Simona Halep will end the year as world number one.
Wozniacki’s victory, completed in a just under two hours, was built on the Dane’s resilience, consistency and greater variation on the key points, and put the 27-year-old into her second final at the eight-woman event after losing in 2010.
“We have had a lot of close matches this year and I was hoping today was my turn. It feels great to be in the final and I have been playing some great tennis this week,” Wozniacki said in a courtside interview.