No. 1 Simona Halep to face Garbine Muguruza in French Open semis

No. 1 Simona Halep to face Garbine Muguruza in French Open semis

No. 1 Simona Halep to face Garbine Muguruza in French Open semis

She will face world number one Simona Halep for the title on Saturday, in what should be an interesting match-up.

The Spanish third seed thrashed Sharapova 6-2, 6-1 in the quarter-finals, condemning the Russian to her worst Grand Slam defeat in more than six years.

In addition to Halep v Muguruza, the other women's semifinal is the first at the French Open featuring two Americans in 16 years: No 10 Sloane Stephens against No 13 Madison Keys in a rematch of last year's US Open final.

Halep had to come back from a break of serve down in the second set and fend off three break points at 4-4 before finally closing out the victory, which guaranteed that she will remain No. 1 in the rankings after this tournament.

Halep has suffered defeat in her three previous Grand Slam final appearances, including two in Paris in 2014 and 2017.

The Romanian broke at the start of the second set and then held for 6-3 as Kerber dropped her serve again in the ninth game.

The Romanian has lost Roland Garros finals to Maria Sharapova and Jelena Ostapenko as well as January's Australian Open decider to Caroline Wozniacki.

Simona Halep celebrates winning her semi-final match against Garbine Muguruza at the 2018 French Open in Paris June 7, 2018.

"I think it would be unusual for me not to include someone that I have competed against for so many years", Sharapova said.

Ahead of the French Open 2018 clash, the 23-time Grand Slam victor called out the parts related to her in Sharapova's autobiography as "hearsay".

"It's not that important, because it's constantly this thing going on", said Muguruza.

Muguruza hadn't dropped a set en route to the semifinals, but it was the first time that she faced a counterpuncher - and one who loves playing on the clay. She double-faulted three times in the opening game of the match to gift Muguruza the initiative. Oh, and she gets to stay as world No.1, whatever happens.

Simona Halep appears to be the clear favourite to win this match, which probably means she won't win it.

Backed by fans who loudly chanted her first name between games, Halep went ahead 3-0 in only 15 minutes with the help of only one victor.

"It's always hard to play someone from your country and such a good friend so I'm really pleased to get through that and play some good tennis", Stephens said in a post-match television interview.

The second set was more of a test for Halep, who was ahead by a set and 3-0 before falling apart against Ostapenko a year ago.

She won the US Open in September on a ranking of 83 and just 69 days after returning to the tour following her near year-long absence.

The fifth-seeded Del Potro, whose career has been hampered by injuries, beat third-seeded Marin Cilic 7-6 (5), 5-7, 6-3, 7-5 yesterday.

Muguruza had thrashed Maria Sharapova in the quarter-finals but Halep was a different proposition entirely, and it seemed she knew it.

Muguruza leads Halep 3-1 head-to-head, but this is their first Grand Slam matchup. She's suffocating her opponents with such deep shots and bullying her way across the court. "If I do that, I will be OK after the match, no matter the result".

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