Published: Fri, June 08, 2018
Sport | By Ashley Hunter

Tactical change helps Halep reach French Open semis

Tactical change helps Halep reach French Open semis

Muguruza, victor two years ago, will face either world number one Simona Halep or Angelique Kerber in the semi-finals. Halep won the match 6-1, 6-4 and managed to keep the number one spot in the WTA ranking.

Halep played her first Roland Garros final in 2014 when she lost to Russian Maria Sharapova. She led Jelena Ostapenko by a set and 3-0 in last year's final at Roland Garros. Halep, who has yet to win a major championship, is in the final for the second consecutive year. Rafa Nadal goes in search of his 11th French Open title but don't count out Novak Djokovic - and what about the in-form Alexander Zverev?

Ruzici is now Simona Halep's manager.

Saturday's matchup is an intriguing one, because both of these players are great movers and defenders, and at the same time neither is going to serve 15 aces. Her wins over Muguruza and Angelique Kerber have taken more than 3.5 hours combined.

Then came Muguruza's final stand: a marathon ninth game that went to deuce no less than seven times that saw her earn three break points but fail to convert them all. Nadal ended the Argentinian's run at the U.S. Open past year with a four-set victory.

"It was very nice to play like that", Halep said. Halep will also have to contend with the fact that once she makes it to the second week of slams, Muguruza comes alive.

"I don't feel I'm favourite for this match, because she's played better than I have this year". "So I didn't really know what to do". "It was tough because her ball is very low, and you don't have many chances to finish the points from there". She's too good of a player to continue to come up short in the big moments.

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"When you're facing somebody that also has an aggressive style of game", Muguruza said about facing Sharapova, "I think it's about who takes the command, who takes the first opportunity".

Halep was my pick to win the French Open, and I truly hope she finally gets the money off her back.

A comeback never appeared likely and, though Stephens was unable to serve out the match at 5-2 after Keys gifted her a double break, she did so at the second attempt with a precise backhand down the line.

"I think the book was 100 percent hearsay, at least all the stuff I read and the quotes that I read, which was a little bit disappointing", said Williams, who played in her first Grand Slam since giving birth a year ago.

A nervous start from the Spaniard was immediately pounced upon by Halep for a break in the opening game.

I want to side with Halep, but I can't bet against Muguruza in her current form.

As in NY nine months ago, it was a mistake-riddled performance from Keys, who committed 41 unforced errors to Stephens' 11. For good measure, remember, Stephens threw in a rut between the U.S. Open last September and her one-round Australian Open stay last January, but as everyone aimed to decipher that, and Stephens aimed to refrain from panic because that's who she is, Murray offers a plausible explanation.

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