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Saudi Arabia to host WTA Finals tennis: governing body

Saudi Arabia will host the WTA Finals for the next three editions, the Women’s Tennis Association said on Thursday, following widespread speculation and criticism from some of the game’s greats.

“Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, will host the next three editions of the WTA Finals from 2024-2026,” the WTA posted on X, formerly Twitter, on its official account.

The broadly anticipated deal comes just weeks after Saudi’s Public Investment Fund, a sovereign wealth vehicle, announced a “strategic partnership” with the Association of Tennis Professionals, which runs men’s tennis.

It also follows criticism from legends Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova, who slammed the prospect of holding the WTA Finals in Saudi in a Washington Post opinion piece.

Moving the season-ending tournament to Saudi Arabia is just the latest sporting acquisition for the world’s biggest oil exporter as it tries to diversify its economy.

Formula One, heavyweight boxing, horse-racing and some of football’s biggest stars now appear regularly in the desert nation, which will be rubber-stamped as hosts of the 2034 World Cup later this year.

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