Yesterday's matches in Paris saw Simona Halep fight back from the disappointment of losing the first set on a tiebreak against Angelique Kerber to take the next two sets in relatively facile fashion, while our selection, Maria Sharapova, disappointed in the extreme in her defeat to Garbine Muguruza, who created 12 break points and faced just one.
The No. 1 ranking, which Halep first secured late last season, is now deeply secondary to her goal of winning her first Grand Slam title.
No. 1 Simona Halep vs.
Half an hour later 1-0 had become 6-1 and the challenge of Muguruza, who would have taken over at the top of the rankings with victory, appeared to be fading fast.
Now third in the WTA leaderboard behind Halep and Caroline Wozniacki, Muguruza will rise above them both to sit atop of the rankings with a win on Thursday. Stephens is second only to Halep in break points converted with 27.
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All three were tight, three-set defeats, none more painful than her slow fade against the inexperienced Ostapenko in Paris past year, where she led, 6-4, 3-0, with a point to go up, 4-0, before Ostapenko rallied to take the trophy instead.
The signs were ominous when the five-times Grand Slam champion coughed up three nervy double-faults in the opening game.
With the momentum back on her side, the Romanian broke to love to secure victory in 92 minutes and return to her second straight final in Paris.
Muguruza's big strokes overwhelmed Maria Sharapova right from the start and their quarter-final was no contest at all in a 6-2, 6-1 one-way journey. "She had a lot more depth in the ball".
"I think Serena hated me for being the skinny kid who beat her, against all odds, at Wimbledon". Nadal ended the Argentinian's run at the U.S. Open previous year with a four-set victory.
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On the connectivity front, the notebook includes USB Type-C, Thunderbolt 3 ports, gigabit-class Wi-Fi 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5.0. Both have Intel Core i7-8550U or Intel Core i3-8130U processors, a NVIDIA GeForce MX150 or MX130 GPU and up to 16 GB of memory.
"I lost three times until now and no one died", Halep said, "so it will be OK".
She further proved her credentials with a dominant, yet gutsy, win over 2016 champion Muguruza, who failed to hold serve in the first set. "I think that we'll just have to go out and compete".
Sharapova looked nervous from the beginning and was never allowed to settle as Muguruza posted her first victory against the Russian at the fourth attempt. "Every day I play better and that makes me happy". Halep then seized her chance, moving 0-40 ahead and then raising her arms in triumph as Muguruza blazed a backhand long. She is also the tournament leader in points won with her second serve (75.2 percent).
Muguruza's last stand came at 4-all in the second set, a 13-minute game in which she held three break points.
"I think she just wasn't healthy", he said. Sharapova suffered one of her abject losses at the Slams since her 6-3 6-0 battering at the hands of Victoria Azarenka in the 2012 Australian Open final. "But, yeah, I think she made everyone wait a little bit".
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