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Simona Halep storms into Montreal semifinals

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Romania's Simona Halep returns against China's Zheng Saisai during their women's singles second round match on the fourth day of the 2018 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 5, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Glyn KIRK / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE

Montreal : World number one Simona Halep punched her ticket to the semi-finals of the WTA Canada tournament for the fourth straight year, cruising past France’s Caroline Garcia 7-5, 6-1. The 26-year-old Halep battled through a difficult first set, then easily won the second in a rematch of last year’s quarter-final contest with Garcia which was also won by the Romanian.

“The first set was really tough,” Halep said.

“I just didn’t give up at all in the first set. After I took it, I felt more confident. I felt that I’m moving better, I’m playing better, stronger. [Garcia] went a little bit down with energy after she lost that set.”


Halep moves on to the final four where she will face Aussie Ashleigh Barty, who ousted giantkiller Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands in straight sets 6-3, 6-1.

Sloane Stephens was just as ruthless as Barty in her quarter-final as the third-seeded American made the semi-finals for the second straight year, seeing off Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia 6-2, 6-2.

Stephens will face defending champion Elina Svitolina, who came back from an 0-4 deficit in the first set to eliminate Elise Mertens 7-5, 6-3.

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