Romania’s Simona Halep wins Montreal title after tight final against Sloane Stephens

Mae Harvey
August 15, 2018

But the American broke Halep with a forehand victor and held two set points on the Romanian's serve at 6-5.

US Open champion Sloane Stephens was just as ruthless as Barty in her quarter-final as the third-seeded American made the semi-finals for the second straight year, seeing off Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia 6-2, 6-2.

Garcia started quickly but could not keep her unforced errors in check, finishing with a total of 31.

Stephens responded brilliantly in the second set however, breaking Halep twice in the first three games before advancing into a 5-3 lead.

Stephens rallied to within 5-4 before Halep, on her fourth match point, slammed her third ace of the match and dropped to her knees in triumph.

Ukrainian tennis player Elina Svitolina completed her performance in the tournament Rogers Cup, which he won previous year.

"I think I played smart tennis today", said Halep, who's looking to repeat her 2016 win here.

"When you're playing good matches in big tournaments like this, I don't think it's peaking too soon".

"Every time I play her, she makes me a better player, she makes me raise my level".

"She was striking the ball and everything was going in for her".

With the pressure on, Halep clutched up to win the match. "I played very well for a set and a half". Yeah, it's disappointing, but I think this will help me moving forward, getting ready to go into Cincy and the US Open. "It's maybe the best place because so many people are so nice with me". She noted Barty had extra rest because she played the first match Friday afternoon.

Next up for Halep is Australian Barty, who strolled to a 6-3 6-1 win over Kiki Bertens in their quarterfinal match earlier in the day. "I'm happy to be back in North America and playing on hard courts, and I'm hoping for some more good results", said Stephens in an on-court interview after the match.

"I've been playing well, consistent and that's great", said Stephens.

But once again the American was unable to seal the deal, Halep recovering to win the next four points for 8-6.

"I feel like my return is growing up, I have more confidence", added Halep.

"Leading up to the U.S. Open, obviously past year it worked pretty well".

Another poor service game from Halep though gave the initiative back to Stephens, who broke for 5-5 and then held for a 6-5 lead.

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