Top seed Halep into third Roland Garros semi-final

Grant SmithJun 07, 2018

"And I think we played many matches". But she fell apart and eventually lost to the unseeded Latvian in her second French Open final.

Simona Halep went from out-of-sorts to on-target against Angelique Kerber, scrambling to every ball and staying the course to erase an early deficit.

In the victory, Muguruza won 72 percent of her first serve points and 46 percent of her second serve points.

Reigning Wimbledon champion Muguruza awaits her after demolishing Maria Sharapova 6-2 6-1 on Philippe-Chatrier and the pair will now fight it out for Halep's No. 1 ranking.

The 28th seed clenched her fist after a hold to love got her on the board, but the aggressive Muguruza was celebrating after one of many vicious groundstrokes put her a set up.

Halep reached the semifinals in a Grand Slam event for the sixth time in her career, matching Ilie Nastase for the most by a Romanian male or female in the Open era.

Serve and return worked much more efficiently while Kerber struggled to maintain the usual range from the baseline Nonetheless, Halep's overall level of play had been in the ascendancy for most of that set's second half - and, continuing to take control from the baseline, she immediately took her first lead of the match with a break in the second set.

The No. 3-seeded Muguruza had lost all three previous meetings against Sharapova, who won two of her five Grand Slam titles at Roland Garros.

An hour and 10 minutes later the 31-year-old was walking off after her worst French Open spanking since she managed only two games against Dominika Cibulkova at the same stage in 2009.

"I think it would be unusual for me not to include someone that I have competed against for so many years", said the 31-year-old. Sharapova was the French Open champion in 2012 and 2014; Muguruza took the trophy in 2016. Muguruza sensed weakness and pounced for a 4-0 lead.

Halep completed the 30th win over a German opponent and remained unbeaten in quarter-finals matches here at Roland Garros. She double-faulted three times in the opening game, part of her 27 unforced errors. Muguruza essentially got that round off, too: Her opponent, Lesia Tsurenko, quit with an injury after only two games. "If I do that, I will be OK after the match, no matter the result".

Kerber is a two-time Grand Slam champion.

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