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Tennis

Halep beats Muguruza to reach French Open final

Simona Halep reached her third French Open final on Thursday.
Simona Halep reached her third French Open final on Thursday. Reuters/Pascal Rossignol

Simona Halep surged into the final of the French Open on Thursday with a gutsy straight sets win over the third seed Garbine Muguruza. After waltzing through the opening set 6-1 in only 37 minutes, the Romanian had to deal with a Muguruza fightback that took the Spaniard into a 4-2 lead in the second set.

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With a deciding set becoming a distinct possibility, Halep, twice a beaten finalist in 2014 and 2017, stayed in touch to trail 3-4 and then pounced on a sloppy Muguruza service game to gain parity at 4-4.

The drama increased as Halep staved off two break points before finally moving ahead 5-4.

Muguruza, the 2016 champion, played another ill-judged game to lose her service for the sixth time in the match.

“This victory is good for my mind,” said Halep. “To know that I can win against a very good player is good for my confidence. I had to play my best tennis.”

She added: “I fought for every ball and I did everything that I planned before the match. I’m happy that I can play another final in my favourite Grand Slam tournament and I hope that I can play better than last year.”

Halep, 26, will take on an American in Paris on Saturday: either 10th seed Sloane Stephens or the 13th seed Madison Keys.

 

 

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