Jim Courier: There was poetic justice in Halep’s win

Stephens to play Halep for second Grand Slam title

Stephens to play Halep for second Grand Slam title

Newly-crowned French Open champion Simon Halep said she was inspired to win her first Grand Slam title by her manager Virginia Ruzici's feats 40 years ago at Roland Garros.

Halep though recovered to take the second set 6-4, and at 3-0 up in the final set, she produced this absolutely stunning point to go just two games from securing her first Grand Slam.

"I wanted (the first Grand Slam title) to also be the same one". "Forty years ago she won here". The fact that it's happened here, it's pretty special.

She lost in three sets to Caroline Wozniacki at the Australian Open earlier this year, but joked that she was happy to have lost down under: "But the most important moment was when I won juniors".

The night before the final, Daren Cahill, her coach of three years, told her, it was her moment to claim.

But after seeing off one of the biggest hitters on tour in Garbine Muguruza in the semi-finals, she pointed out: "I'm fast, though, no?" It was a physical and mental fight.

When Halep served for the match at 5-1 with chants of "See-Mohh-Nahhh" reverberating around Court Philippe Chatrier, only a sudden attack of nerves could have denied her.

Halep's win was one of the most popular for many years at Roland Garros and at times during the match the support for the 26-year-old was deafening. Halep, who lost the final here 12 months ago to young gun Jelena Ostapenko when leading by a set and a break in the second, flipped the story this time round.

But the Romanian said that she managed to use those memories to her advantage, knowing that there was still a way back into the match in her third French Open final. But it was the Suzanne Lenglen trophy she really desired and the tears flowed as she raised it skywards on Saturday after showing huge character to battle back to victory. I'm really happy that it's happened in Roland-Garros in Paris.

"I said that if I will win a Grand Slam in professional tennis, I want it to be the same one".

"Thanks guys it was unbelievable and I felt your support", Halep, who lost this year's Australian Open final to Caroline Wozniakci, said on court.

It was the flawless way for the Romanian to banish the demons of her painful final defeat by Jelena Ostapenko 12 months ago, when she blew a lead of a set and 3-0.

"I tried to not do the same thing as previous year".

The match was all but ended as Halep clinched the double break in game four after some magnificent defending in one of the points of the match. "So I said there is a chance to come back and win it", she said of the final.

Halep's French title arrived in the 32nd Grand Slam of her career.

Halep produced not one, but two fantastic returns at the net to seal the game, eventually being the victor of the final set 6-1 to take home the trophy and 1.12 million euro prize money. Her patience finally paid off as she used all her experience to weather the Stephens storm.

Halep, 5 ft 6', who can run just about anything down, but struggles when she has to close out a point, added, "He gave me confidence". "And at one point I felt that she started to feel a little bit exhausted and to miss more".

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