By Aradhana Aravindan
SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Caroline Wozniacki will be looking to carry the momentum of a strong end to the season through to a second successive WTA Finals title triumph next week as the Dane looks to end her most successful season on a high.
The 28-year-old world number two built on her victory in Singapore a year ago by claiming a maiden Grand Slam title at the Australian Open in January, with Wozniacki keen to stress the importance of making the most of being in good form.
"I think it's really important. Any bit will help," Wozniacki, who won her second China Open title earlier this month, told reporters in Singapore on Thursday ahead of the season-ending eight-woman event that starts on Sunday.
"You play against the top players in the world so you need to be on your A-game to win matches and try and win the tournament. So I am definitely going to take the momentum that I have and try and play well here."
Wozniacki outlasted American Venus Williams 6-4 6-4 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium a year ago and is eager to defend her title.
"This is the last tournament of the year and I am really excited. This is a goal to be here. From the start of the season, everyone wants to be here. It is only the top eight players, so It is definitely hard competition," she added.
"Obviously, winning here last year was very special and I am looking forward to giving it another try, and I am excited for the challenge."
Wozniacki also admitted that she will be sad to see the WTA Finals depart Singapore after a five-year run in Southeast Asia when the tournament shifts to Shenzhen in China from 2019.
"Yeah I will definitely be sad to see it go. I love Singapore, I have had great memories here," she said.
"I think it's such a great place. We love coming back here, year after year. So I am definitely sad to see it go, but at the same time, it's had any amazing run and the five years, I think they have done an incredible job."
Wozniacki will be the top-ranked player in Singapore this year after world number one Simona Halep, who the Dane beat to claim the Australian Open title, withdrew through a back injury on Thursday.
Angelique Kerber, Naomi Osaka, Petra Kvitova, Sloane Stephens, Karolina Pliskova, Elina Svitolina and Kiki Bertens are the other seven women competing in the $7 million event.
(Writing by John O'Brien; Editing by Pritha Sarkar)