No one had been in better form coming into this semi-final stage of the first major of 2020 than Simona Halep.
The Romanian’s stay in Adelaide was short but her performances in Melbourne had been fantastic coming into the final having not dropped a set.
Muguruza was unseeded as she came into the first major but has shown that tennis we know and love from her that took her to the top of the game a few years ago.
Compared to the first semi-final as a contest this was much better and both players seemed at it with us level at 2-2 in the early exchanges.
Six games to the service holder in a intense but interesting affair. Longer rallies favouring Halep but short balls being scooped up from Muguruza who has been solid from the baseline but missed a big opportunity on Halep’s serve for a break.
The aggression from the Spaniard continued as did her plan to come forward and it paid dividends as she broke serve first of all in the second semi-final.
The break of serve and a 5-3 lead gave Muguruza a chance to seal the first set against the Romanian but the errors seemed to flow off the racket of the Spaniard.
Halep fought to 5-5 and even went onto see a set point but as per the first semi-final of the day the opener would be decided by a tie-break.
The first three points went the way of Muguruza but at 2-3 the pressure right back on the Spaniard to keep her lead.
0-3 to 3-3 and back to Muguruza leading at 5-4.
Set points came and went after some incredible defence from Halep squeezing a forehand winner down the line!
The third set point for the Romanian came and was quickly squashed by another good serve from Muguruza!
A good serve followed by a bad one and a first double fault of the match gave Halep a fourth set point on her serve.
What else but a 20 shot rally going the way of Muguruza to level at 8-8!
A loose backhand from Halep set up a set point on Muguruza’s serve this time. The 3rd set point which she took after a major blunder at the net from Halep to take the opening set!
The challenge was now set for Simona Halep, can she mount a comeback following the first set she has dropped all tournament and could Muguruza keep this level up?
Clutch tennis from Simona Halep, 15-40 down and a ball called out which was in so had to replay and levelled the set early on.
A first for Simona Halep who found herself ahead in the set with a break of serve but it was short lived as Muguruza levelled back up immediately.
Another lead for Simona Halep after seeing four set points a long backhand from Muguruza gifted the lead back to Romanian who after the sit-down will attempt to consolidate the break.
The ball striking from Muguruza continued to be exceptional but as was the reply from Halep who after squandering an earlier lead took a 4-2 lead in the second set!
Muguruza continued to be in the back of Simona Halep’s head and despite a small blip she continued to hit the ball with authority and broke Halep as she served for the set.
5-6 0-30… Simona Halep found herself two points from going home.
The tennis from Muguruza was ruthless, on the back foot but came up with a big net winner to set up two match points!
First was saved but pressure on the Halep defence at the net once again gave Muguruza the win she deserved in a fantastic performance winning 7-6 7-5!