French Open: Top-ranked Simona Halep advances to semifinals
Romanian will play 3rd-seeded Garbine Muguruza, who ousted Maria Sharapova
Top-ranked Simona Halep has rallied past Angelique Kerber 6-7 (2), 6-3, 6-2 to reach the French Open semifinals.
Halep went all out in Wednesday's first set but her bold strategy backfired badly as she hit 30 unforced errors. She reacted well to limit her mistakes while staying aggressive on her German opponent's service games.
"After the first set I just stayed strong, I did not give up at all," said Halep, the 26-year-old Romanian who will face Garbine Muguruza on Thursday. "I missed a lot at the beginning of the match. I tried to do too much. Then I changed a little bit of tactics and it worked."
Halep is still chasing her first Grand Slam title. She led Jelena Ostapenko by a set and 3-0 in last year's final at Roland Garros. But she fell apart and eventually lost to the unseeded Latvian in her second French Open final.
Garbine Muguruza overwhelmed Maria Sharapova 6-2, 6-1 in a matchup of past French Open champions to reach the semifinals.
The No. 3-seeded Muguruza had lost all three previous meetings against Sharapova, who won two of her five Grand Slam titles at Roland Garros.
Muguruza has not dropped a set so far in this year's tournament as she seeks a second championship in Paris and third major trophy overall. The Spaniard won the French Open in 2016 and Wimbledon last year.
She needed only 70 minutes to eliminate Sharapova and dominated her with superb returning, breaking the former No. 1 a half-dozen times.
Sharapova was hardly at her best right from the start, double-faulting three times to get broken in the opening game. She ended up with six double-faults and 27 total unforced errors, 12 more than Muguruza.
Muguruza raced to a 4-0 lead and never looked back.
Sharapova didn't need to play a point in the fourth round, because Serena Williams pulled out of their much-anticipated match with an injured chest muscle. Muguruza essentially got that round off, too: Her opponent, Lesia Tsurenko, quit with an injury after only two games.