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Thursday, December 1, 2022

Simona Halep seeks 1st title in Toronto vs Beatriz Haddad Maia

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It will be Beatriz Haddad Maia and Simona Halep taking on each other in the National Bank Open final in Toronto on Sunday. On Sunday, the two finalists made it through to the title round after having battled for over two hours in their respective semi-finals.

In the first semi, the 15th-seeded Halep came from down a set to oust the higher-seeded Jessica Pegula. The Romanian won 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 after two hours and 12 minutes of play. Halep hit 10 double faults across the match, eight more than Pegula’s two.

She won 59% of her first-serve points to Pegula’s 53%. While Halep saved 12 of the 17 break points she faced, she also converted five break points on the American’s serve to ensure the result of the match went her way in the end.

Post-match, Halep shared, “I changed a little bit the tactics. In the first set, it was a little bit too fast. She was hitting super strong and I didn’t feel the rhythm. Then I just calmed down and I tried to just push her back a little bit more”.

National Bank Open: Beatriz Haddad Maia’s no-letting up

In the second semi-final, Haddad Maia needed two hours and two minutes to prevail 6-4, 7-6(7) against the 14th-seeded Karolina Pliskova. This is the first time a WTA player from Brazil has made it this far in a WTA event of this stature.

Haddad Maia saved four of the six break points she faced while converting three break points on Pliskova’s serve. The southpaw finished the match with just three points more than Pliskova’s 81. The National Bank Open’s the fourth final of Beatriz Haddad Maia’s career and the third final of this year.

In the two previous finals she contested this year, in the grass season, she claimed the Nottingham and Birmingham Open titles back-to-back. In the latter event, the Brazilian got past Simona Halep in the semi-final. Overall, though, Halep holds a slender 2-1 win-to-loss record against Haddad Maia.

Meanwhile, this is the first time that the two-time Major champion’s reached the final of this event in this city. Photo Credit: Wilson Twitter

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