French Open: Ruthless Halep into quarters

Published by Reuters / Tennismash

Simona Halep celebrates victory against Iga Swiatek on day nine at Roland Garros; Getty Images
Title holder Simona Halep thrashes Poland’s Iga Swiatek 6-1 6-0 to storm into the French Open quarterfinals.

Defending champion Simona Halep hurried into the French Open quarterfinals by sweeping aside Polish teenager Iga Swiatek in a 6-1 6-0 victory on Monday.

The third seed had a tough start to the tournament, dropping sets in her opening two rounds, but since then the 27-year-old Romanian has been ruthless.

After beating Lesia Tsurenko for the loss of three games in 55 minutes in round three, Halep needed only 45 minutes to defeat Swiatek 6-1 6-0.

FEATURE: Do surface specialists still exist?

The 18-year-old Pole, last year’s Wimbledon junior champion, had done brilliantly to make the fourth round but it was a rather chastening experience as she won just 21 points.

“I have a good feeling, I feel good on court and I’m not stressing myself about the result,” said Halep.

Halep now faces an an even younger player in 17-year-old American Amanda Anisimova, who defeated Spanish qualifier Aliona Bolsova 6-3 6-0 on Monday.

Halep joked she felt “very old”, saying: “To play against someone 10 years younger than me, that’s not easy. But I feel stronger on court.

“We’ll see the next one. They’re young, they have nothing to lose, so every match is tough.”

Anisimova made her breakthrough by getting to the fourth round of the Australian Open in January and has now gone one better. She is the first player born in the 2000s to make the last eight at a slam.

The teenager revealed she was inspired by Halep, saying: “I was watching Simona before my match and then I was like, ‘Oh, my God, her backhand down the line is so good’, and she was taking her time, and then I think I was mimicking it in my match.

“I can’t describe how excited I am. It’s amazing playing her. I couldn’t ask for a better match-up.”

Earlier, American Madison Keys ensured a quarter-final showdown with Australia’s Ashleigh Barty.

In wet conditions in Paris, the 14th-seeded Keys had no problem dealing with 42nd-ranked Katerina Siniakova and advanced to last eight for the second straight year with a 6-2 6-4 victory.

Keys, the runner-up to Stephens at the 2017 U.S. Open and a semifinalist in Paris last year, said: “I’m definitely happy I was able to close it out in two sets.”

Keys and Barty played each other here two years ago in the first round, with the American winning 6-3 6-2.

Barty said: “I played her here at the French Open a few years ago in a match I would love to forget. So I think it’s very much a fresh, clean slate for this match.”

Share this: 
  • Most popular articles

16 August 2019

Resurgent Keys beats Halep in Cincinnati

Madison Keys beat Simona Halep for just the second time in seven meetings to advance to th... More

29 May 2019

Mary Pierce: Building a life in tennis

"Life is busy,” says Mary Pierce, flashing the radiant smile that made her a fan favour... More

29 April 2016

How to beat a better player

Victory was never out of the question when Bernard Tomic faced 17-time Grand Slam champion... More

18 August 2019

Kuznetsova to meet Keys in Cincinnati final

Contesting only her ninth tournament of 2019, Svetlana Kuznetsova continued her vintage fo... More