Tennis: WTA announces ballot for annual year-end awards. Simona Halep, among the nominees for Player of the Year
The WTA has announced its nominees for its annual year-end player awards in the categories of Player of the Year, Doubles Team of the Year, Most Improved Player of the Year, Newcomer of the Year and Comeback Player of the Year this week.
The WTA will be looking to recognize winners at the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global in Singapore, and the voting timeframe reflects success throughout the regular WTA season, wtatennis.con informs.
International tennis media can vote for one player in each respective category up until the close of business on Monday, Oct. 16.
The Player of the Year category features two of the four Grand Slam winners of the 2017 season in Jelena Ostapenko and Garbine Muguruza and the current World No.1 and French Open runner-up in Simona Halep. Also on the ballot is Elina Svitolina, holder of a WTA-leading five titles on the season; Karolina Pliskova, who also spent time at World No.1 this season; and Venus Williams, who reached two Grand Slam finals and returned to the WTA Top 5.
The Doubles Team of the Year category features the three teams who’ve won the four Grand Slams this season and have claimed a combined 15 WTA titles in 2017: Chan Yung-Jan and Martina Hingis, Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina, and Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Lucie Safarova.
Most Improved Player of the Year will go to one of the following: France’s Caroline Garcia or Kristina Mladenovic, the aforementioned Ostapenko or Svitolina – the only players to feature in two categories, or CoCo Vandeweghe, who reached two Grand Slam semifinals in 2017.
The Newcomer of the Year category sees teenagers CiCi Bellis and Marketa Vondrousova nominated alongside breakout Belgian and Brazilian, Elise Mertens and Beatriz Haddad Maia, respectively.
The Comeback Player of the Year category is home to US Open winner Sloane Stephens, two-time major champion Petra Kvitova, US Open runner-up Madison Keys, and Australia’s Ashleigh Barty, who’s shaved hundreds of spots off her ranking this season to be on the cusp of the Top 20.