Halep ousts Venus Williams from Australian Open, set to face Serena

By Daily Sports on January 20, 2019

Views: 218

Top seed Simona Halep set up a highly anticipated Australian Open last-16 tie against Serena Williams by beating the American’s older sister Venus.

The 27-year-old Romanian eased to a 6-2 6-3 victory, winning in straight sets for the first time at this year’s tournament in Melbourne.

Seven-time champion Williams, 37, reached the last 16 by thrashing 18-year-old Ukrainian Dayana Yastremska.

“It’s going to be a bigger challenge but I’m ready to face it,” said Halep.

The Romanian says she has “nothing to lose” against the 23-time Grand Slam champion, who is aiming to match Australian Margaret Court’s all-time record of major triumphs.

Williams has won eight of their nine previous matches, with their last meeting coming at the US Open in 2016.

Since then, Halep has won her first Grand Slam title, having triumphed at last year’s French Open.Halep, who lost to Caroline Wozniacki in last year’s final, said she came into the first Grand Slam of the year with “no expectations” after a difficult past five months.

She arrived in Melbourne having not won since August, a five-match losing streak punctured by an absence with a back injury, while she also split with her long-time coach Darren Cahill in November.

After needing her fighting qualities to beat Estonian veteran Kaia Kanepi and young American Sofia Kenin in the opening two rounds, Halep moved up a level against seven-time major winner Williams, 38.

“It was a great match – my best match here this year,” Halep said.

“It is always a big challenge to play against the Williams sisters so I was super motivated.”  (BBC)

•Photo shows Simona Halep 

Source Daily Sports

Posted January 20, 2019


 

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