Twelve months ago, Halep gave an indication of her potential to scale the heights of the tennis world when she came through to win the title in 's-Hertogenbosch. She returned as World No.3 and top seed following a meteoric rise that has seen her pick up five further titles and a few weeks ago come within a whisker of adding the French Open crown to her list of accomplishments.
The Turning Point
Halep took her time adjusting to the change from clay to grass, waiting until the eleventh game to hit the front. A typically precise return winner brought her the break, and from that point there was no looking back.
Some vintage play at the start of the second helped her to an early break as Govortsova's resistance began to unravel. A second break soon followed thanks to a well-timed move to the net before the Romanian confidently served out for a place in the second round.
"It was very tough because it was my first match on grass this year," Halep said. "At the beginning it was difficult to completely manage my emotions and I got a little frustrated.
"It was also difficult to find my rhythm because the balls were coming off the court very fast. But I was serving my best today and once I got through the first set things started to get easier and I started to hit more winners."
In the second round, Halep will face Annika Beck, who won in two tight sets against qualifier Julia Glushko. Halep has won both of their previous meetings, including en route to the title in 's-Hertogenbosch last year.