Sensational Stephens sets up Halep final

Maria Sharapova

Simona Halep is two wins away from earning her first Grand Slam title.

Seeing her opponents come back against her in grand slam finals, this time Simona Halep turned the tables. After sitting out almost a year because of surgery on her right foot in January 2017, she has soared up the rankings and now made it to her second major final in the past nine months. She lost the title match to Caroline Wozniacki at the Australian Open in January.

After a timid start, Stephens found her rhythm and took control of the opening set by breaking in the third game with a forehand victor down the line.

A champion at last, after failing here against Maria Sharapova in 2014 and Jelena Ostapeno last year, Halep let the tears flow the very second that Nadia Comaneci hugged her tight, as she clambered into the stands to celebrate with family and friends, including her manager, Virginia Ruzici, the only other Romanian to lift the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen, 40 years ago.

Linda Ellis, Last Word on Tennis: "I am going with Sloane Stephens". Stephens said: "You have to go out there and get after it and make sure you play every point and try to execute your game plan as best as possible". "When you're writing an autobiography, I don't think there is any reason to write anything that's not true", said Sharapova after losing 6-2 6-1. "In the last game I didn't feel like I could breathe any more and didn't want to repeat previous year, so I cannot believe it". I don't get too up, too down.

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

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He added, however, that he could pull them out of the country quickly if necessary. "Utter idiocy. You can't describe this as anything other than a joke".

Juan Martin del Potro is back in the French Open semifinals for the first time since 2009 and will next face Rafael Nadal, the man with the most appearances at this stage of the clay-court Grand Slam. So I will stay chilled.

Daniel Rapaport: In a final featuring two players as evenly matched as Halep and Stephens-both will be top-five after this tournament, and both are without question one of the five best players in the world-the decisive factor is often mentality. Although Halep leads the head to head matchup, this is the final of a Major.

"I don't want to think about that because, as I said many times, it's a different match, different situation".

At 6-3 2-0 it looked like the American's passable impression of a human wall was going to prove too much for Halep and consign her to a third defeat in the championship match at Roland Garros. She made the last-16 in Madrid and Rome and now has a chance to make the French Open final.

After making 30 unforced errors in the first set, which she lost 7-6 (2), Halep finally found the right rhythm to dictate points with deep groundstrokes and aggressive returns. I'm backing Halep to win in three sets.

She improved to 3-0 against her longtime pal and Fed Cup teammate Keys, including their US Open final last September.

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