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Venus and Serena make Doha doubles list

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 11:45

Venus Williams and Serena Williams have qualified for next month’s season-ending Sony Ericsson Championships in Doha – as a doubles pair.

The American sisters, who have won three of the four grand slam doubles titles this year, are the second pair to qualify for the elite four-team event, joining Cara Black and Liezel Huber as certainties to play at the Khalifa International Tennis Complex in Qatar.

“We are thrilled to be heading to Doha for the Sony Ericsson Championships,” Serena Williams said. “I love playing doubles with Venus as we have so much fun on the court.

“This year we actually decided to put more emphasis on our doubles careers and going to Doha has been on our minds all season.”

Serena has also already qualified for the singles event, with Dinara Safina, Elena Dementieva and Caroline Wozniacki also guaranteed a spot – but last year’s champion Venus is still to secure her place in the eight-woman field.

“It has been extremely rewarding to win a number of big doubles titles with Serena this year,” Venus said. “While playing doubles with my sister is one of the best experiences for me, qualifying for the Sony Ericsson Championships as a team is a great accomplishment and we can’t wait to get to Doha and take on the best doubles teams in the world.”

Should either Serena or a successfully-qualified Venus win all of their matches between October 27 and November 1, they would take home a huge payout for five days’ work.

A potential $1,550,000 is on offer to the winner of the singles competition should they come through the round robin stage with three victories, while the doubles crown pays out $375,000 to the winning team from the $4.45m prize money on offer in Doha.

As well as lifting titles at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open, Venus and Serena also claimed the doubles title at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford.

Their only defeat of the season came at Roland Garros at the hands of Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Nadia Petrova.

The sisters are two of only three active players to have a complete career doubles Grand Slam along with compatriot Lisa Raymond, and incredibly have won all ten grand slam finals they have reached.

This will be the sisters’ first outing as a doubles pair at the Championships, which this week announced that Fila will be kitting out the officials, ballkids and staff in Doha.

The Italian clothes brand will design a bespoke green-purple range for the event based on their classic tennis line from the 1970s and 1980s.

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