Garbiñe Muguruza sends Maria Sharapova crashing out of French Open
Jun 07, 2018, 05:26
Kerber, bidding to become the second German woman to reach the last four here, after Andrea Petkovic, since Steffi Graf in 1999, was visibly ailing because of blisters in the deciding set and the medical time out after three games didn't help her to solve the issue. "After the first set I just stayed strong and didn't give up", Halep told the court Suzanne Lenglen crowd in a post-match interview. "I missed a lot at the beginning of the match. Then I changed a little bit of tactics and it worked".
Wimbledon champion Muguruza took just 70 minutes to brush her aside 6-2, 6-1 and make the semi-finals at what is looking like one of the fortnights when she runs hot.
Halep, the runner-up in 2014 and 2017, will face Spanish third seed Garbine Muguruza for a place in Saturday's final.
Halep broke at the start of the second set and then Kerber dropped her serve again in the ninth game.
The third seed moved swiftly into a 3-0 lead and went on to take the first set 6-2 as her power and precision proved too much for the 31-year-old.
"I don't feel I'm favorite for this match, because she's played better than I have this year", Muguruza said of her next match against Halep. Muguruza, who is 3-1 against the No. 1-seeded Halep in her career, has never squared off with her in a Grand Slam. Halep also won their most recent battle at the Australian Open where she saved match points to win 9-7 in the third set of their semi-final. The Spaniard won the French Open in 2016 and Wimbledon past year.
And when asked for her thoughts on the former world No 1's withdrawal, Sharapova said: "I hadn't had a withdrawal in - I don't know how long".
Sharapova was hardly at her best right from the start, double-faulting three times to get broken in the opening game. Muguruza sensed weakness and pounced for a 4-0 lead.
Sharapova and Williams were due to clash in the fourth round on Monday but the American pulled out at the last minute of their eagerly-awaited grudge match with injury. She went on to commit only 16 errors over the course of the next two, which was the difference in getting the win.
This will be the 10th time Halep and Kerber have faced off with the Romanian edging their head-to-head 5-4.
Both Keys and Stephens completed their Grand Slam quarterfinal set in Paris this year and Keys has now made the semifinals or better at 3 of the 4 majors.
In the other men's quarterfinal, No 3 Marin Cilic and No 5 Juan Martin del Potro were at 5-5 in a first-set tiebreaker when the matchup of past US Open champions was stopped.
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