Honormeh Aganga Blog

Halep advances in Melbourne

Two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep began her preparation for this month’s Australian Open with a 6-4 6-2 win over local qualifier Destanee Aiava in the Melbourne Summer Set 1 tournament on Wednesday.

The former world No 1, who was troubled by a calf issue that forced her out of last year’s French Open, Wimbledon, and the Tokyo Olympics, showed no signs of the problem in her 78-minute stay on Rod Laver Arena.

Trailing 3-4 in the first set, Romanian Halep switched gears to take the next five games before finishing in style. She will take on compatriot Elena-Gabriela Ruse in the second round.

In the WTA Tour’s Summer Set 2 event, China’s Zhu Lin beat former US Open winner Sam Stosur 7-6(5) 7-6(5).

Australian Stosur will call time on her singles career after the January 17-30 Australian Open, though she will continue to play doubles in 2022.

American Madison Keys fended off a late comeback attempt from Briton Harriet Dart to secure a 6-3 7-6(2) victory while Russian third seed Daria Kasatkina went through after her compatriot Anna Kalinskaya retired while down 6-1 3-0.

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