MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Simona Halep continued her rampaging begin to the season with a 6-2 6-1 demolition of Montenegrin trailblazer Danka Kovinic to reach the last 16 of the Australian Open on Saturday.
The 14th seeded Romanian fired up on a baking scorching day at John Cain Arena to fully overpower Kovinic, who had dumped U.S. Open champion Emma Raducanu out in her earlier match, changing into her nation’s first participant to reach the third spherical of a Grand Slam singles event.
After lacking Wimbledon and the French Open in an injury-plagued 2021, Halep is now again to peak health and has notched eight straight wins, together with a warm-up title in Melbourne.
“Well, I really feel nice that I can play the fourth spherical once more,” stated Halep, who was crushed by Serena Williams within the quarter-finals last 12 months.
“In entrance of this crowd is at all times a pleasure, so thanks all people for staying on this warmth as a result of it is tremendous scorching right this moment.”
Twice Grand Slam champion Halep, who reached the 2018 ultimate at Melbourne Park, will play (*16*) Alize Cornet for a spot within the quarter-finals.
“I really feel like I performed nice, (Kovinic) was a bit bit drained, she had a troublesome match earlier than me,” added Halep.
“I really feel good, extra assured now as a result of last 12 months was a robust 12 months and now I simply take pleasure in enjoying tennis as a result of I’m wholesome.”
(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Peter Rutherford)