Maria Sharapova fires back at Serena in book feud

Hope Soto
June 8, 2018

As if to reflect the last few months, not just the chance to win her first Slam, but also the No 1 ranking will be on the line for Halep when she faces Garbine Muguruza.

Kerber eventually prevailed in a tiebreak, but Halep came out all guns blazing in the second, firing baseline bullets at her opponent, who tried to cling on against the onslaught.

Keys built a whopping 30-12 edge in winners and won 84 percent of her first-serve points.

Stephens advanced to the French Open final for the first time on Thursday, beating Madison Keys 6-4, 6-4 in an all-American semifinal on Court Philippe Chatrier.

However, fast forward a year and Stephens is a US Open champion, is about to reach at least the number four ranking in the world and on Saturday will take on Halep in the 2018 French Open final.

It was just her fifth loss in 25 Grand Slam quarter-finals.

"I will try my best", Halep told the crowd at Court Phillipe Chatrier, "and hopefully I will be better than a year ago". Her wins over Muguruza and Angelique Kerber have taken more than 3.5 hours combined.

It's ladies singles semi-final day today, and with the tournament wide open, our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, returns to preview the action. After sitting out almost a year because of an injured right foot that needed surgery in January 2017, she has soared up the rankings and now made it to her second major final in the past ninth months.

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She is one of two semi-finalists - alongside Garbine Muguruza - who are yet to drop a set this fortnight in Paris.

Muguruza, the 2016 champion, earlier thrashed Maria Sharapova 6-2, 6-1 to reach the semi-finals, condemning the Russian to her worst Grand Slam defeat in more than six years.

However, it was just a brief respite as 24-year-old Wimbledon champion Muguruza claimed a quick double break for 4-1, backed up by a hold for 5-1.

The next step for Halep will be her most hard. "And then when we get on the court, it's time to compete". I think that's a load of crap, but, you know, it's just me (smiling). "If I do that, I will be okay after the match, no matter the result".

"I played again one of my best matches on clay", Halep said after coming back from a break down in the second set against Muguruza.

"So tomorrow is going to be a big challenge for me". Yes, Muguruza has won three of their four head to head meetings, but Halep has won their only clay clash, so the head to head series is pretty irrelevant to this match-up.

But Keys, who made 23 unforced errors in the first set, hit back hard and set up a break point at 3-2, only for Stephens to save it with a service return victor.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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