Live Blog: Sharapova Vs Halep
Published June 07, 2014 12:13
GAME, SET AND MATCH SHARAPOVA, 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-4
After breaking at love to serve for the match, Sharapova serves the match out at love - a nifty eight points in a row to finish the match. A huge serve sets up a huge inside out forehand, which Halep could not get back into the court - and Sharapova drops to the terre battue afterwards in celebration.
I cannot wait to hold this trophy!! I'm speechless!— Maria Sharapova (@MariaSharapova) June 7, 2014
Sharapova breaks to lead 5-4
Two massive forehands - one that went right up the middle and clipped the baseline, and another one struck crosscourt and completely on the run - give Sharapova a 0-30 lead on Halep's serve, and a Halep error into the net makes it 0-40. And Sharapova's not wasting any time - she belts a crosscourt backhand winner into the corner, out of reach of Halep. Sharapova breaks and will serve for the match.
Halep breaks to even it 4-4
With the three hour mark approaching - they're at two hours and 55 minutes - Halep isn't about to let a break of serve dash her hopes for the title. She breaks to get right back into it, a Sharapova double fault sealing the deal on break point. What's the longest women's final ever at Roland Garros?
Halep holds, Sharapova still leads 4-3
Since leading 2-1 with break points for 3-1, Halep had lost three games in a row - but she stops the bleeding with a very comfortable hold of serve, finishing the game off with a fantastic crosscourt forehand that Sharapova got a racquet on but put into the net. The drama continues on Chatrier...
Sharapova holds to lead 4-2
Two games ago, Sharapova had lost her serve three times in a row and was facing break points to lose it a fourth time at 1-2. But she dug out of that service game and now her serve is in full force - she blasts her serve and blasts a string of groundstroke winners to hold serve at love and go up 4-2.
Sharapova breaks for 3-2
Sharapova carries her momentum from the last game into this one, storming out to 0-40 - triple break point. Halep staves off the first two break points but it's third time lucky for Sharapova, who sneaks the break out on a Halep error into the net. Once again, the Career Grand Slam holder is a break up.
Sharapova holds to even it 2-2
Sharapova's in trouble once again on her serve, facing two break points with Halep ready to pounce on the return - but a huge crosscourt backhand on the first one and a forehand down the line on the second one, both into Halep's backhand corner, help her get out of trouble. A huge forehand up the line on her own game point doesn't come back and Sharapova lets out a war cry after holding for 2-all.
Halep holds to lead 2-1
The pressure's on - Halep holds serve comfortably to go up 2-1 in the third and deciding set, and Sharapova's up next to serve - but she has been broken the last three times she has served...
Halep breaks to even it 1-1
Just like she did in the second set, Halep breaks right back after going down an early break. On break point Halep digs out a backhand and Sharapova isn't able to put the short ball back in the court.
Sharapova breaks to lead 1-0
The stats for the marathon 72-minute second set weren't as pretty as the first set for either player - Sharapova was -8 (14 winners to 22 unforced errors) and Halep -8 also (8 to 16). But at the end of it all it was Halep who clinched it, sending the French Open final to a third set for the first time since all the way back in 2001, when Jennifer Capriati defeated Kim Clijsters in an epic, 1-6, 6-4, 12-10.
Back to this match, Sharapova comes out firing at the beginning of the third set - she kicks off the game with a forehand winner and eventually breaks at 15 on a Halep backhand that sails just long.
Woohoo!!! Loving this women's final @rolandgarros!!!— Anne Keothavong (@annekeothavong) June 7, 2014
SECOND SET HALEP, 7-6(5)
After getting a mini-break for 1-0 right at the beginning of the tie-break, Halep is never ahead for most of it - Sharapova goes up 2-1 and is eventually two points from the title at 5-3. But right when she looks like she's out, Halep claws back - she wins four straight points to take the tie-break, 7-5, and send the French Open final to a third set for the first time in a very long time. How long has it been?
Sharapova breaks to even it 6-6
Sharapova re-retaliates, breaking back at love. Halep has her own break too, breaking a string on the 0-40 point - she intelligently hits a drop shot then follows it into the net, but is eventually on the losing end as Sharapova goes right at her and she can't get out of the way. It's on to the tie-break!
Halep breaks to lead 6-5
After racing out to 0-40 on the Sharapova serve, Halep watched the break points start to disappear as Sharapova started clawing back - first 15-40, then 30-40. But the Russian caught a backhand late on the third break point and it sailed on her, giving Halep another opportunity to serve for the set.
Sharapova breaks to even it 5-5
Clearly hoping to close it out in straights, Sharapova breaks back - and there may have been a little luck on break point, as a huge Sharapova backhand clips the net cord and dribbles over for a winner.
What! That point was sick! @rolandgarros— rennae stubbs (@rennaestubbs) June 7, 2014
Halep breaks to lead 5-4
Sharapova looked to be cruising to an easy hold but Halep worked her way back into it, winning what might become the point of the tournament - a long rally that saw both players running corner to corner until Sharapova eventually put a backhand into the net - and finally breaking off a Sharapova crosscourt forehand that sailed just wide. Halep will now serve for the second set of the final.
Halep holds to even it 4-4.
After racing out to a 30-0 lead, Halep ends up having to dig the game out after Sharapova gets herself to break point - twice even. But Halep is up to the challenge, rifling winners on both break points, first a forehand and then a backhand. Sharapova was so close to serving for the match - but not so fast.
Sharapova holds to lead 4-3
Just like Halep did in the last game, Sharapova steps up to the line and serves up a solid hold. The game includes her first ace of the match - which also happens to be her 25th winner of the match.
Halep holds to even it 3-3
She may not have broken in the last game, but Halep is right back in it, not just on the scoreboard but in every department. And with some confident forehands and pinpoint serving - and a blistering backhand winner up the line on game point - the Romanian holds serve comfortably to keep it even.
Sharapova holds to lead 3-2
After losing two games in a row, Sharapova finds herself in some hot water - yes, hot water - as she falls behind 0-30. But with the prospect of Halep winning three straight games on her mind she shifts to another gear, digging out of that hole and getting back on track with a smooth hold of serve.
Halep holds to even it 2-2
In a mirror image of the first set, Halep evens the score in the second set at 2-2 - and she does it with a fantastic point, chasing down two seemingly unretrievable Sharapova forehands to work herself back into the point, then eventually drawing one last error to clinch it. #halepgotseriouswheels
Halep breaks, Sharapova still leads 2-1
The answer is Dinara Safina, the only player Sharapova has lost to from a set up at the French Open, in the fourth round here in 2008. And she barely lost that one actually - she was up 5-2 in the second set and had a match point at 5-3, and led 5-2 in the second set tie-break, but eventually lost to her countrywoman, 6-7(6), 7-6(5), 6-2. But back to this match, while we were talking stats, Halep was brilliantly getting herself back in contention - she breaks Sharapova back to get it back on serve!
Sharapova breaks to lead 2-0
With a flurry of fierce forehands - three of which she struck for winners - Sharapova breaks again. Sharapova is 139-7 in her career when winning the first set at Grand Slams, and an incredible 40-1 at Roland Garros - do you remember the only time she lost here after going a set up? Answer coming...
Sharapova holds to lead 1-0
The first set stats tell the story of the match so far. Sharapova 18 winners to 16 unforced errors, Halep an even 9-9 - Sharapova is clearly the aggressor, and she's keeping her numbers positive. And she steps up to serve the opening game of the second set and cruises through it in four minutes.
Sharapova breaks - FIRST SET SHARAPOVA, 6-4
Sharapova rights the ship and again tames the unforced errors, bringing up a set point with Halep serving at 30-40. Halep plays an absolute perfect point - pinpoint serve up the T that draws a short ball, then a perfect crosscourt forehand putaway with Sharapova running the other way. But Sharapova brings up a second set point with a huge forehand return, and on that set point Halep goes for a little too much on a crosscourt forehand and it sails out - Sharapova clinches the first set of the final!
Halep breaks, Sharapova still leads 5-4
The momentum has clearly shifted. While Sharapova's errors are starting to outweigh her winners, Halep is getting more and more solid - she breaks at 30 and has now won eight of the last 10 points.
Halep holds, Sharapova still leads 5-3
Serving with new balls, Halep serves up the first love game of the French Open final - a huge crosscourt forehand winner coupled with three Sharapova errors breaks Sharapova's five game streak.
Sharapova holds to lead 5-2
There are two patterns starting to emerge. First, Sharapova is not the same player as she was in the first set of her last three matches - maybe the early 2-0 deficit was the only comparison there. Second, her forehand is the shot of the match so far - after Halep blasts an insane forehand winner on the first point, Sharapova cruises through the entire rest of the game, mainly due to that massive shot.
Sharapova breaks to lead 4-2
Halep looks strong early on in the game but Sharapova rips through three quick points to get the break, the first of which being a picture perfect lob over a net-rushing Halep, then a Halep forehand into the net and finally a screaming Shazza backhand winner up the line to keep building that momentum.
Sharapova holds to lead 3-2
The two play yet another long game, this time four deuces, and Halep - who is dialed in - has two more break chances, but Sharapova comes up with a massive inside out forehand winner on the first one then bunts a backhand down the line Halep can't get back in on the second one. Sharapova holds.
Sharapova breaks to even it 2-2
In a very long game, and on her fourth break point, Sharapova finally gets the break back when a Halep crosscourt backhand sails wide. But it was a game of high quality - Sharapova hit four winners during the game, all off the forehand, as well as a crazy backhand angle that Halep couldn't handle.
Sharapova holds, Halep still leads 2-1
Staring down an early deficit, Sharapova tightens the screws on her game and tames the unforced errors, producing three massive forehand winners en route to a 40-30 lead. And this time she doesn't falter - after a long point she digs out a short forehand that prompts a Halep error, and she holds.
Halep holds to lead 2-0
Sharapova squeaks out a pair of forehand winners early in the game, but Halep eventually gets to 40-30. She misses her first game point with a forehand error, but back-to-back down-the-line winners - one off the backhand, then one off the forehand - give her the game and an early 2-0 lead.
Halep breaks to lead 1-0
Sharapova is the first to serve and wins the first point of the French Open final with a crosscourt forehand winner, and she eventually gets to 40-30 - but she double faults and the game gets to deuce, and a pair of unforced errors off her groundstrokes give Halep the first break of the match.
Let's Get Started...
It's a warm, sunny, perfect day at Roland Garros, and Sharapova and Halep have walked onto Court Philippe Chatrier to a round of applause just a few minutes after 3pm Paris time. Both are sporting their signature French Open looks as well - get their gear and apparel right now at Tennis Warehouse!
Roland Garros (@rolandgarros) June 7, 2014
PARIS, France - One's one of the WTA's most decorated legends, the other its brightest WTA Rising Star - Maria Sharapova will take on Simona Halep in the final of the French Open, and wtatennis.com is right here, bringing you game-by-game coverage in this live blog from first ball to last ball.