American Serena Williams has qualified for the Sony Ericsson Championships - Doha 2009, set to take place for the second year in a row at the Khalifa International Tennis Complex in Doha, Qatar, from October 27 to November 1. World No.2 Williams joins world No.1 Dinara Safina, who was the first player to qualify two weeks ago.
The world's Top 8 singles players and Top 4 doubles teams from the 2009 Sony Ericsson WTA Tour season will compete for the coveted season-ending title and a share of the record prize money of $4.55 million.
Williams has had a stellar 2009 season, winning two of the first three Grand Slams (Australian Open, Wimbledon) and reaching another final at the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami. She held the No.1 ranking for 11 weeks, from February 2 to April 19, before Safina took over. She also leads the prize money leaders this year with $3,950,466. The 27-year-old has also won three doubles titles this year with Venus Williams (Australian Open, Wimbledon, Stanford); as a result, Serena and Venus Williams currently rank No.2 in the Doubles Race to Sony Ericsson Championships - Doha 2009.
"Serena has achieved great results this year, impressing everyone with her tremendous performances at the Grand Slams," said Stacey Allaster, Chairman and CEO of the Tour. "I congratulate Serena on qualifying for the Sony Ericsson Championships and look forward to what promises to be one of the best Tour season finales in history."
"We congratulate Serena on qualifying for the Sony Ericsson Championships - Doha 2009 and look forward to another exciting Sony Ericsson Championships," said Aldo Liguori, Corporate Vice President and Head of Global Communications & PR for Sony Ericsson.
"I am really excited about qualifying for the Sony Ericsson Championships for the ninth time in my career," Williams said. "It's never easy and it's never a guarantee, so I am thrilled to be going to Doha and competing against some of the best players in the world."
Sony Ericsson, one of the largest global mobile phone manufacturers known for style and innovation, is committed to bringing entertainment and glamour to tennis, and taking the sport to new places and new audiences. Sony Ericsson's style and technology has attracted a wider interest to women's tennis and provided unique opportunities to the stars of the Tour.
The Championships were first played in 1972 and since then the event has been held in such notable venues as Madison Square Garden, New York City; the Olympiahalle in Munich; Staples Center in Los Angeles; and the Recinto Ferial Casa de Campo in Madrid. Former singles champions include Tracy Austin, Kim Clijsters, Chris Evert, Evonne Goolagong, Steffi Graf, Martina Hingis, Martina Navratilova, Gabriela Sabatini, Serena Williams, Justine Henin and Venus Williams. Cara Black and Liezel Huber, defending champions in doubles, currently lead in the Doubles Race to Doha with 6,750 points.