The Road To Singapore is a long, grueling journey, but the last few years there have been some very early signs of who was going to qualify for the WTA Finals, as early as Week 1 of the season.
In 2013, Week 1 couldn't have been more predictive. Serena Williams, Li Na and Agnieszka Radwanska swept all three trophies during the three-tournament week of Brisbane, Shenzhen and Auckland, and all three ended up making the elite eight who went to the WTA Finals in Istanbul.
There was something else very special about that week - it was the only time in WTA history where three Top 10 players all won titles in the same week (Williams was No.3, Li was No.7 and Radwanska was No.4). There have been 54 three-tournament weeks in WTA history, including this past week.
The same almost happened in 2014. Williams, Li and Ana Ivanovic ended up sweeping the titles in Brisbane, Shenzhen and Auckland, and Williams and Ivanovic would both qualify for the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global - and Li, who was No.1 on the Road To Singapore for much of the year, would probably have made the cut had she not stopped playing after Wimbledon.
So could we have just witnessed something else brewing for this year's WTA Finals? Maria Sharapova won the Premier-level Brisbane International (read more here), Simona Halep conquered the Shenzhen Open (read more here) and Venus Williams won the ASB Classic (read more here).
All three of them have some major credentials, not just in terms of overall careers - Sharapova and Williams are both former No.1s, while Halep has been as high as No.2 - but they've all done very, very well at the WTA Finals before, Sharapova and Williams being former champions and Halep, in her career debut at the WTA's crown jewel event, going all the way to the final there last year.
And don't think for one second that it's not on Halep's mind to get back there in 2015.
"My goal is to play the WTA Finals in Singapore again this year," Halep said before embarking on her title run in Shenzhen this past week. "I know I have to play my best at every tournament, but I'll just go match by match and tournament by tournament, and I hope to be in the Top 8 again."
Serena Williams, who kicks her WTA season off at the Australian Open, is also eager to return.
"I was able to end last year on a high note by lifting the Billie Jean King Trophy, and I have been working hard this off-season to prepare for another season," the World No.1 said. "As women's tennis continues to grow globally, I look forward to seeing all our fans on the Road To Singapore."