Sun, 23 Feb 2020

Halep stumps up for Australian Open win

News24
23 Jan 2020, 22:14 GMT+10

Melbourne - Simona Halep said she dreaded to think how much money she owed her coach after victory over British qualifier Harriet Dart in the Australian Open second round on Thursday.

The fourth seed pledged earlier this month to donate $200 to Australia's bushfire relief fund each time she gives her Australian coach Darren Cahill a hard time during matches.

Halep cruised the first set 6-2 against Dart, but the second set was not so easy, the Romanian kept at bay by the determined 164th-ranked Briton.

Two-time Grand Slam champion Halep slapped her thigh twice after failing to put Dart away on third match point at Rod Laver Arena.

The former No 1 finally sealed victory at the fourth attempt when the 23-year-old Londoner fired long, but not before aiming a few choice words at Cahill.

"He's counting this stuff so I am afraid to ask (how much she owes)," the 28-year-old Halep joked, after the 6-2, 6-4 win.

Cahill famously told Halep that she was "a disgrace on the court" at the WTA Finals in November after a poor first set.

Halep, winner at Wimbledon last year, plays Yulia Putintseva of Ukraine or American 26th seed Danielle Collins in the third round in Melbourne.

Halep conceded that she should have wrapped the match up sooner.

"It was a little bit dangerous, I lost focus a bit at the end," she said.

"I like to play under pressure, it is more fun and exciting.

"But I prefer to finish the match when I can."

After winning a match in Adelaide last week, Halep tweeted that she would be donating $2 000 for berating Cahill "'only' 10 times during tonight's match".

Results on day four of the Australian Open Grand Slam at Melbourne Park on Thursday (x denotes seeding):

Men

Round 2

Gael Monfils (FRA x10) bt Ivo Karlovic (CRO) 4-6, 7-6 (10/8), 6-4, 7-5

Ernests Gulbis (LAT) bt Aljaz Bedene (SLO) 7-5, 6-3, 6-2

Dominic Thiem (AUT x5) bt Alex Bolt (AUS) 6-2, 5-7, 6-7 (5/7), 6-1, 6-2

Daniil Medvedev (RUS x4) bt Pedro Martinez (ESP) 7-5, 6-1, 6-3

Alexei Popyrin (AUS) bt Jaume Munar (ESP) 6-2, 7-6 (7/5), 6-2

John Isner (USA x19) bt Alejandro Tabilo (CHI) 6-4, 6-3, 6-3

Andrey Rublev (RUS x17) bt Yuichi Sugita (JPN) 6-2, 6-3, 7-6 (7/5)

Alexander Zverev (GER x7) bt Egor Gerasimov (BLR) 7-6 (7/5), 6-4, 7-5

Women

Round 2

Belinda Bencic (SUI x6) bt Jelena Ostapenko (LAT) 7-5, 7-5

Anett Kontaveit (EST x28) bt Sara Sorribes (ESP) 6-2, 4-6, 6-1

Donna Vekic (CRO x19) bt Alize Cornet (FRA) 6-4, 6-2

Iga Swiatek (POL) bt Carla Suarez (ESP) 6-3, 7-5

Elise Mertens (BEL x16) bt Heather Watson (GBR) 6-3, 6-0

Catherine Bellis (USA) bt Karolina Muchova (CZE x20) 6-4, 6-4

Garbine Muguruza (ESP) bt Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3

Zarina Diyas (KAZ) bt Anna Blinkova (RUS) 4-6, 6-3, 6-4

Kiki Bertens (NED x9) bt Arina Rodionova (AUS) 6-3, 7-5

Angelique Kerber (GER x17) bt Priscilla Hon (AUS) 6-3, 6-2

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS x30) bt Taylor Townsend (USA) 7-5, 7-6 (7/1)

Karolina Pliskova (CZE x2) bt Laura Siegemund (GER) 6-3, 6-3

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