Halep notches first career win over Sharapova

Beijing: World No.2 Simona Halep of Romania snapped her seven-match losing streak to Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova, advancing to the quarter-finals of the China Open here on Wednesday.

The wild carded Sharapova was troubled by her serve, producing five double faults in the whole match, three of which came in the first set, reports Xinhua news agency.

After each broke once in the first two games of the first set, the second seed broke another two and hold her own two to take a dominant 5-1 lead.

Although Sharapova managed to take the seventh game in her service, Halep showed no mercy in the eighth when she served, winning five points in a row to close the first set.

“I think she played an incredible match, probably the best she’s played against me in all of our previous meetings. And I wasn’t as sharp,” said Sharapova.

“She was hitting the ball consistently, not making a lot of unforced errors, her service percentage was quite high. She did all the right things.”

Sharapova was trying to raise her level by strengthen attacking power. But it is obvious not her game as she was broken twice in the third and seventh games of the second set, due to too many unforced errors including two double faults.

As the same as in the first set, the Romanian star won the set in the eighth game when she served, snatching her first ever career victory over Sharapova.

Awaiting Halep in the quarter-finals is either 11th seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland or Daria Kasatkina of Russia.