Simona Halep secures her place in a third Rome final despite a shaky ending…

Simona Halep is into her third Rome final after a hard-fought win over Garbine Muguruza with a smallish crowd of a socially distanced 1000 on Court Centrale for the final few matches.

Matches between Simona and Garbine are always fascinating, coming into the match it was the Spaniard who led the head to head 4-2 but both of Halep’s wins had come on the clay with Muguruza winning their last match in Melbourne.

Coming into the match it was Simona Halep who was the fresher of the two players having spent soo much less time on court and that showed in the early exchanges. Halep had been dominant on route to the semi-finals but not tested and despite taking the first set and controlling opening proceedings well the intensity did slip from the top seed.

Up a set and 4-2 the Romanian slipped in to that passive style of tennis, Muguruza was hampered by this left thigh problem but sensed the drop in intensity from the Simona Halep.

The Romanian’s pace had dropped and the Spaniard really began to fire behind her backhand reeling off four games in a row to surprisingly take the match to a third set winning the second 6-4.

Simona Halep knew she could pull Muguruza around if she could find that depth on the forehand once again and four in a row became a theme…

Muguruza reeled off four games to take the second set and Simona Halep was in no mood to wait around going up a double break and leading 4-0 with the speed of Muguruza’s groundstrokes dropping around 10-12kph from those last few games of the second set.

The domination continued as the semi-final edged to an end with Halep finding her rhythm but once again Muguruza stood up and found her power but Halep dialled back in to break back again.

Serving for the match didn’t go to plan for Halep and from serving at 4-0 for a 5-0 lead it was quickly 3-5 and serving for the match and to keep hold of a vital break of serve.

A surprising break to love and from such a dominating position the former world number one was in trouble looking for a place in her third Rome final!

Two double faults from the Spaniard sealed a wild set of tennis as Simona Halep secured her place in her third Rome final!

Two double faults from the Spaniard sealed a wild set of tennis as Simona Halep secured her place in her third Rome final!

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