Halep Fights Past Muguruza, Will Meet Pliskova In Rome Final

Tanya Simon
September 21, 2020

World No. 2 Halep, 28, was competing in her third Rome WTA final, having finished runner-up in 2017 and 2018 on the clay at the Foro Italico.

The Romanian, who even shook off a hard fall in the second game, was at her aggressive and disciplined best while Pliskova looked sluggish with her on-court movement, failing to hit a single victor as she was bagelled in 20 minutes. So the Romanain shocked her opponent, the Czech defending champion in the first set of the Italian Open women 'singles final: 6-0 in 20 minutes!

This was the 12th face off between Halep and Pliskova in their careers, and though the Romanian led the overall head-to-head prior to the final, it was Pliskova who had won three of their last four meetings.

Victory gave Halep her first title in Rome and her third consecutive title of the year after wins in Dubai - before the COVID-19 hiatus - and Prague last month.

Simona Halep is not putting any pressure on herself ahead of the French Open after Karolina Pliskova's retirement handed her the Internazionali d'Italia title.

"I know how to play against her because we played so many times".

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"I just want to go there, get used to the courts and the atmosphere, and try to win every match I play".

"I think it was a tough match". I stood behind her and was waiting for my opportunities.

She later said that she hopes to be ready in time for Roland Garros and blamed the sudden switch from hard courts to clay and late matches giving her little time to recover.

"I can't say I was in the mental state I am now back then, because at the time, playing Simona on clay would have felt like no chance", Pliskova said.

"She's going to be risky".

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