Halep marches into Rome final, Muguruza retires injured

French Open favourite Simona Halep lived up to the billing with a comfortable victory over Kiki Bertens at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia. She will face Svitolina in the final

Simona Halep in action against Kiki Bertens   -  Getty Images

Simona Halep's sensational form on clay showed no sign of abating on Saturday as the Romanian cruised into the Internazionali BNL d'Italia final with a straight sets win over Kiki Bertens.

Meanwhile, Garbine Muguruza suffered a blow in the build-up to her defence of the French Open, retiring in the first set of the semifinal against Elina Svitolina due to a neck injury.

The Spaniard was trailing 4-1 to Svitolina when she withdrew from the match after a discussion with her trainer, handing the Ukrainian passage to Sunday's final against Simona Halep.

Garbine Muguruza withdrew from her semifinal match midway due to a neck injury.   -  Getty Images


Sixth seed Halep has now won 10 matches in a row on dirt and could claim a second title in that run in Rome after a 7-5 6-1 triumph set up a final fixture with either Garbine Muguruza or Elina Svitolina.

The 2014 French Open finalist soon hit her stride with a number of good combinations from the baseline, her backhand proving particularly sweet as she broke immediately.

Halep continued to hit deep, but impressively had the answer at the net when Bertens tried to mix things up.

There was some fight from Bertens as she saved five set points in the opener — albeit with a slice of luck as the umpire and line judges noticed a wide first serve too late as she was trying to keep Halep at bay.

Halep was not to be denied three games later as she moved ahead and that seemed to destroy Bertens' fight, the World No. 20 losing four games in a row in the second set before firing long to give up a sixth break of the match as the Roland Garros favourite underlined her title-winning credentials.

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