Victoria Azarenka was the last player to come to Istanbul because she was occupied by winning the title in Luxembourg. Remember, the Belarusian was the only one missing in the glamorous player photo shoot introducing the luxurious tournament with the prize money of $4,900,000. The world No.4 continued her Luxembourg form (she didn't lose a set en route to the trophy) and at the WTA Championships she recorded two solid victories to reach her first semifinals in her third appearance at the tournament.
After dominating Samantha Stosur in her first round-robin match 6-2 6-2, with the same score Azarenka took out French Open champion Li Na to become the first certain member of the Istanbul final four. The fifth-ranked Li earned zero break points against Azarenka and hit 22 unforced errors more than her opponent (39 to 17).