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Serena to defend title at year-end championships

LOS ANGELES — Tennis Channel will be live at the prestigious women’s year-end championships in Istanbul, Turkey, throughout next week, as tennis’ top-eight singles players and best-four doubles teams of the year compete for 2013 crowns. With daylong coverage October 22-27, the network will offer close to 40 hours of round-robin and knockout-stage matches at the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships, which feature the most accomplished players in women’s tennis in 2013. No. 1 among them, 2013 US Open and French Open winner Serena Williams will attempt to win her second-consecutive year-ending singles championship, and the fourth of her Hall of Fame career.

During the six-day event, Tennis Channel will cover all round-robin and singles and doubles semifinal matches live, followed by same-day encore singles and doubles championships Sunday, Oct. 27. Weekday telecasts will run from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET, with varied schedules on the weekend (complete schedule follows). As with 2012, Tennis Channels’ Brett Haber (@BrettHaber) will call the matches beside analyst Lindsay Davenport (@LDavenport76), who won three-straight year-end doubles crowns from 1996-1998, and the singles title in 1999. On Friday, Oct. 25, Corina Morariu, who held the No. 1 doubles ranking in 2000, will fill in for Davenport.

The annual year-end women’s tennis championships are limited to just the eight singles players who earned the most points during the calendar year, and the four top points-earning doubles teams. Every autumn the tournament splits the singles players into two groups of four, with each player guaranteed at least three matches during the week, against the other three members of her group. Following this round-robin play of all-stars - with each match the potential caliber of a Grand Slam semifinal or championship - the top two in each group move on to a traditional, single-elimination knockout stage of semifinals and the final match. The four doubles teams also compete in this single-elimination format.

As she pursues her fourth year-end title, Williams faces a field that includes 2012 and 2013 Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka and six other women’s tennis heavyweights: Agnieszka Radwanksa, Li Na, Petra Kvitova, Sara Errani, Jelena Jankovic and Angelique Kerber. The doubles draw is led by 2013 Australian Open champions and Fed Cup powerhouses Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci. The other three teams consist of Hsieh Su-Wei/Peng Shuai, Nadia Petrova/Katarina Srebotnik and Ekatarina Makarova/Elena Vesnina.

Tennis Channel’s Web site, www.tennischannel.com, will feature additional TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships information during the tournament. The network will also interact with viewers on platforms Facebook (facebook.com/tennischannel), Twitter (twitter.com/tennischannel), YouTube (youtube.com/tennischannel) and Instagram (instagram.com/tennischannel).

Tennis Channel’s 2013 TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships Schedule (all matches live unless otherwise indicated)

Date                            Time (ET)                   Event                                                                          
Tuesday, Oct. 22         10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.        Round-Robin Action
Wednesday, Oct. 23    10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.        Round-Robin Action
Thursday, Oct. 24        10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.        Round-Robin Action
Friday, Oct. 25             10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.        Round-Robin Action
Saturday, Oct. 26         6 a.m.-7:30 a.m.          Doubles Semifinal
8 a.m.-1:30 p.m.          Doubles Semifinal, Singles Semifinal
Sunday, Oct. 27           8:30 p.m.-12 a.m.        Doubles Final (Encore), Singles Final (Encore)

 

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