World no. 7 Petra Kvitova has become the sixth player to punch WTA Finals ticket, joining Ashleigh Barty, Karolina Pliskova, Naomi Osaka, Simona Halep and Bianca Andreescu at the elite WTA event in Shenzhen. Petra will compete at this tournament for the seventh time, winning the title on debut in 2011 and losing the final in 2015 to Agnieszka Radwanska.
The 29-year-old has won two crowns from four finals this year, standing as the leader of the pack in the first part of the season before losing ground a little bit due to injuries. After an early exit in Brisbane, Kvitova won the title in Sydney and advanced into the third Grand Slam final at the Australian Open, dropping 28 games in the first six matches and battling hard against Naomi Osaka who prevailed 7-6, 5-7, 6-4 in the title match.
Belinda Bencic toppled the Czech in the final in Dubai and the results were not that good at Indian Wells and Miami (quarter-final loss to Ashleigh Barty), changing all that in Stuttgart where she won the second and so far the last WTA title of the season, followed by the quarter-final run in Madrid.
An arm injury forced Petra to skip Roland Garros, needing time to find the form again and suffering early losses at Wimbledon, Cincinnati and the US Open before raising the level again in the last couple of weeks, advancing into the semi-final in Wuhan and the quarter-final in Beijing.
Ashleigh Barty ousted the Czech in the Chinese capital in three sets and Petra had decided to skip Linz and prepare for Moscow, where she should be the second seed behind Elina Svitolina, seeking the title and more points in that tight battle for the year-end ranking positions.