Defending champion Elina Svitolina had successfully qualified for the WTA Finals at the eleventh hour, after a season full of ups and downs. 2019 has been rather weird for the Ukrainian, who has been known for her excellence at WTA tournaments and struggles at the Majors. It was completely opposite for Svitolina this year, having reached two Major semifinals and going title-less in an injury-riddled season.
A bright start to the season saw Svitolina ride on the momentum from her triumph in Singapore last year, reaching four consecutive quarterfinals at the Australian Open, Qatar Total Open, Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships and the Miami Open. Her impressive results put her in the driving seat to qualify for Shenzhen, but a knee injury limited her clay-court performance and put her qualification in doubt.
The Ukrainian bounced back to reach the semifinals at Wimbledon, her first Major last-four appearance. She seemed to have slowly gained back her form and confidence, replicating the result at the US Open and following it up with three quarterfinals during the Asian swing.
Although the knee has still been bothering Svitolina, she will be motivated by the fact that she entered Singapore with no momentum last year, but still managed to win it all. This year, can she do it again?