WTA

Halep sees off compatriot Ruse to advance on home soil

By Sports Desk October 27, 2021

Simona Halep eased to victory over compatriot Elena-Gabriela Ruse on home soil in Romania to advance through to the last 16 of the Transylvania Open.

Ruse won her first WTA title at the Hamburg European Open in July and reached the final of the Palermo Ladies Open later that month, but she was second best against Halep.

The top seed produced a commanding performance as she held serve throughout and broke her opponent twice in both sets to progress 6-1 6-2 in a time of 73 minutes.

Halep, who departed at the quarter-final stage of the Kremlin Cup last week, is on course to meet US Open winner Emma Raducanu in the semi-finals in Cluj.

Anett Kontaveit also prevailed on Wednesday with a straight-sets win of her own, the second seed seeing off Aleksandra Krunic 6-3 7-5.

The 25-year-old, seeking her third WTA 500 indoor trophy in the space of two months, made the most of some Krunic errors to set up a last-16 tie with Alison Van Uytvanck.

Anhelina Kalinina earlier beat Anna-Lena Friedsam 6-2 6-2 to become the first player to book their place in the quarter-finals.

At the Courmayeur Open in Italy, top seed Dayana Yastremska required three sets to overcome Kateryna Kozlova 6-1 3-6 7-5.

Clara Tauson and Ann Li also avoided upsets as they beat Giulia Gatto-Monticone and Kamilla Rakhimova respectively.

Related items

  • Andreescu to miss Australian Open as she focuses on mental health Andreescu to miss Australian Open as she focuses on mental health

    Bianca Andreescu will miss the 2022 Australian Open to focus on her mental health after suffering a "very challenging" couple of years.

    Andreescu has struggled with physical and mental concerns since winning the US Open two years ago.

    The 21-year-old has felt the strain even more this year, with her grandmother in intensive care after contracting COVID-19, Andreescu also testing positive and spending significant time in isolation.

    The former world number four has decided to skip the first grand slam next year as she takes extra time out to "reset, recover and grow", but vowed to return "stronger than ever."

    The Canadian tweeted: "As you all know, the past two years have been very challenging for me for a variety of reasons.

    "Especially this year in particular, I spent multiple weeks in isolation quarantining which affected me greatly – both mentally and physically. In addition, my grandmother spent several weeks in the ICU due to a covid infection, something that really hit me hard.

    "A lot of days, I did not feel like myself, especially while I was training and/or playing matches. I felt like I was carrying the world on my shoulders.

    "I could not detach myself from everything that was going on off the court; was feeling the collective sadness and turmoil around it and it took its toll on me.

    "I want to give myself extra time to reset, recover and grow from this (as cliche [sic] as that sounds) and continue to inspire by doing charity work, giving back and working on myself because I know by doing this, I will come back stronger than ever.

    "I will therefore not start my season in Australia this year, but will take some additional time to reflect, train and be ready for the upcoming 2022 season."

     

  • Davis Cup: Medvedev and Rublev seal third title for Russian Tennis Federation Davis Cup: Medvedev and Rublev seal third title for Russian Tennis Federation

    The Russian Tennis Federation sealed the 2020-21 Davis Cup after beating Croatia 2-0 in the final in Madrid.

    Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev secured a third title for the RTF following 7-6 (9-7) 6-2 and 6-4 7-6 (7-5) wins over Marin Cilic and Borna Gojo respectively.

    It completed a double for the Russians after Liudmila Samsonova inspired the women's team to glory in the Billie Jean King Cup last month.

    Appearing in their first Davis Cup showpiece since 2007, the RTF had lost only two matches during the finals – one of which coming during Saturday's win over Germany with the outcome already decided.

    Rublev broke in game seven on the way to taking the opening set against Gojo 6-4.

    The world number five was strong on his first serve, winning 36 of 39 points, and drew first blood for his nation after prevailing 9-7 in the second-set tie-break.

    US Open champion Medvedev then took on Cilic, who was attempting to keep Croatia's hopes alive in what was their third final in five years.

    The world number two's strong serve proved the difference during a tight opening set. Indeed, he hit seven aces on the way to edging his nose in front 9-7 on the tie-break.

    Medvedev then broke the world number 30 in game four to take command of the second set.

    And a crucial second break followed at 5-2 up to secure a hat-trick of Davis Cup crowns for his nation, who were also victorious in 2002 and 2006.

  • Nadal expects Djokovic to finish with the most men's grand slam titles Nadal expects Djokovic to finish with the most men's grand slam titles

    Rafael Nadal conceded that Novak Djokovic will likely end his career with the most grand slam singles titles in men's tennis history, ahead of the Spaniard and Roger Federer.

    The so-called 'Big Three' of tennis have long dominated the ATP Tour, with all three sitting on 20 major titles after Djokovic collected three from a possible four in 2021.

    Djokovic, who secured a year-end number one ranking for a record seventh time, would have completed a clean sweep if it were not for Daniil Medvedev in the US Open final.  

    Nadal, by contrast, missed large parts of the season with a foot injury, while Federer was similarly ruled out for a substantial period after requiring a third knee operation in the space of 18 months.

    Nadal could make a return for the Australian Open in January, an event that the world number one may miss due to a vaccine mandate, but he still expects Djokovic to hold the record for major titles when the trio has retired.

    "Djokovic is best positioned to be the [men's] player with the most grand slams," Nadal said to Movistar.

    "You don't have to fool yourself – Federer is where he is and I am where I am. However, Djokovic is playing well and in a good moment.

    "That is the reality, and you can't ignore it. We don't know what is going to happen in nine months' time, but he is the favourite right now."

    Nadal triumphed at Roland Garros in 2020 but has only appeared at two majors since, while Federer – who hopes to return to tour-level action in 2022 – last collected a grand slam title at the Australian Open in 2018.

    Nadal is glad that the likes of Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev and Medvedev, who only dropped one set across the entire tournament as he denied Djokovic the perfect year, are taking over.

    "They are no longer the Next Gen, we do not have to make it eternal," Nadal said of the new 'Big Three' in tennis.

    "Players like Medvedev, Zverev or Tsitsipas have already passed that stage of the Next Gen, they are the current generation, the present."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.