2014 French Open, Women`s Final: Maria Sharapova vs Simona Halep – As it happened...
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2014 French Open, Women's Final: Maria Sharapova vs Simona Halep – As it happened...

Last Updated: Saturday, June 07, 2014, 22:05
  
2014 French Open, Women`s Final: Maria Sharapova vs Simona Halep – As it happened...
Zee Media Bureau/Jayanta Oinam

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 6 – 4) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

Another love game gave Sharapova, her second French Open title in three finals. Her big serves finally arrived as Halep failed to negotiate with them, allowing the Russian to go for the kill each time the ball returned.

In a match lasting little over three hours, Sharapova produced 46 winners to Halep's 20. But 52 unforced errors from the Russian almost gifted the title to Halep. But, like a true champion, Sharapova controlled her inner demons, yet again.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 5 – 4) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

Halep, it seemed, had returned the gift to her Russian opponent. From a prime position, the Romanian conceded the game. It was a great game from Sharapova though, hitting some breathtaking shots, one cross-court backhand winner and a forehand cross-court passing shot.

She needs a game, and serving.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 4 – 4) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep.

A double fault to give away the game, and probably the match too. Sharapova crumbled.

A moment ago, the Russian was serving with all gumption, in fact, an Ace took the life out of her opponent … it seemed. But a forehand error, a forced one, gave Halep a break point. Then a gift.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 4 – 3) Halep

Halep served. Won by Halep.

A comfortable service game for Halep as she forced Sharapova to an error, a forehand shot into the nets.

The Romanian is hanging on.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 4 – 2) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

Perfect service game from the Russian as she hold her service game on love. Nothing much from the Romanian as a series of mixed-up serves bombarded her side of the court.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 3 – 2) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

The Russian broke Halep, in what could be the most important game of the match. Any slip-up in this stage will only mean death-knell for any player.

It was an easy game for Sharapova as Halep failed to catch-up with the Russian's pace.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 2 – 2) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

After 14 points, Sharapova hold her serve, which included four deuce. Halep, who started as the underdog has gained her confidence after winning that second set tie-breaker. And spurred by the majority of the crowd, she is certainly going all out to win her maiden Slam.

For Sharapova, it may well defined her campaign. Saved two break points. Gritty.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 1 – 2) Halep

Halep served. Won by Halep.

Finally, the server hold on to her game. A tight game to call as Sharapova kept Halep on toe for most of the rallies. But Halep served out the game without going into the deuce and breaks.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 1 – 1) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep.

As the script goes, Halep broke back to make it even at one game each in the deciding set, reminding that in women's tennis the server is not the favourite. Serena's case may be different, though. Here, it's breaking services all around, from both the ends.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – 7(7), 1 – 0) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

Can't really predict a winner here. Sharapova broke Halep again.

It was very poor opening service game from the Romanian. She could only garnered a single winner against Sharapova's four.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6(5) – (7)7) Halep

After 72 minutes of grueling tennis, Simona Halep wrested a set back. The 2014 French Open Women's singles final will be decided in the third set.

Sharapova continued to play better tennis as against her rival with 14 clear winners, but 22 unforced errors swung the momentum in favour of Halep. Sharapova also committed four double faults to Halep's two.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 6 – 6) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

Fourth straight games on break. Like the previous game, the server had no clue and conceded rather meekly. This Sharapova won the game on love.

Tie-break on.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 5 – 6) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep.

The breaking story continues as Halep broke Sharapova for the second game in row. Another chance for the Romanian to win the set and keep the title fight open.

It was an uncharacteristic service game from the multiple Slam winner. Her off target serves were punished by the fourth seeded player to win the game rather comfortably.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 5 – 5) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

Sharapova broke back Halep in the very next game to keep the set on serve. Sharapova produced one of her better games in the game to deny the Romanian the second set. After taking 0-30 lead, the Russian didn't allow Halep to return in the game, as she converted the first break-point following a brief fight-back.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 4 – 5) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep

Sure, Simona is fighting. She broke Sharapova on the ninth game of the second set to give herself an outside chance.

It looks like a similar script is written for the second too. After trailing 0-2, Halep has turned the heat on Sharapova. She will serve to close out the set and back in the match.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 4 – 4) Halep

Halep served. Won by Halep.

Giant of a game. Typical Sharapova fight-back, fist clenched. But, Halep is using all her tactics. Serving body-line, keeping the rallies slow and slicing. After 10 points, Halep won the game as Sharapova failed to keep her cross-court return in play.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 4 – 3) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

On serve in Paris, as Sharapova won the crucial seventh game of the second set comfortably. The game also witnessed the four-time Major winner producing her first ACE of the match.

Two more games for the Russian to win her second French Open title in three years.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 3 – 3) Halep

Halep served. Won by Halep.

A comfortable hold for Halep as she kept the game simple, clean, inviting Sharapova to make the errors.

After a brief duel with one-two-one rallies, Halep forced Sharapova to play backhand, on which she produced her own backhand winner to wrap-up the game for 3-3 in the second set.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 3 – 2) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

Incredible game of tennis. Sharapova committed two double faults to let Halep lead the game 0-30, then the Russian returned to take three points on the trot, before another Deuce, another double fault.

But the three-time finalists tamed the demon to win the game, thanks to a expansive cross-court backhand from Halep.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 2 – 2) Halep

Halep Served. Won by Halep.

Halep's back on level terms. It was a comfortable game for the Romanian, who is vying to end the Grand Slam drought for country. Last time any Romanian won a Grand Slam singles title was way back in 1978.

It seems Sharapova is struggling to keep her game on.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 2 – 1) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep.

Another break of service, this time for Halep. Inconsistencies! Erratic shots spoils the good match-up between two of tennis world's pin-up girls.

The game also witnessed Sharapova committing yet another double fault, and the Romanian seized the initiative back.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 2 – 0) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

It's Sharapova all the way here. She broke Halep after engaging the Romanian in a lengthy game. It was probably Halep's worst service game. Committed a double fault and also gave away points at crucial stages, when she needed most to stay in the match.

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Sharapova (6 – 4, 1 – 0) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

Spurred by the opening set win, Sharapova started the second set in a clinical fashion. Won the game on love.

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Sharapova (6-4) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

First set won by Sharapova. It was tight game from both the ends, but the Russian managed to keep her cool and wrested the opening set after breaking Halep, thanks to a forehand Unforced Error.

In the first set, Sharapova converted three of the seven break opportunities while it was two out of four for Halep. The Russian was clearly the dominating player with 18 winners to her opponents only nine. But Sharapova's winners were sort of compromised as she also committed four double faults as compare to Halep's one.

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Sharapova (5-4) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep.

Halep broke Sharapova for the second time in the match. And what a time to do so. Now, it's on serve. She will serve to stay in the set.

In contrast, it was a poor service game from Sharapova. Her game was marred by a couple of unforced errors, mainly due to the pressure from the Romanian.

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Sharapova (5-3) Halep

Halep served. Won by Halep.

At least some fight-back from the Romanian, playing in her first ever Grand Slam singles final. Won her game on LOVE, thanks to her body-line serves.

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Sharapova (5-2) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova

A quick game from the seven seed. Halep could only manage to take a point. Fine service game from Sharapova though, which included three on dot, at the T.

In a brink, the complexion of this final has changed. It was Halep, who started brightly, breaking the Russian in the very first game, then after two games, it's all Sharapova in Paris.

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Sharapova (4-2) Halep

Halep served. Won by Sharapova.

Back to back breaks from Sharapova as Halep struggled to keep her service in place. The Romanian started with a fault. Sharapova capitalized on the weak service, producing a couple of forehand winners, before ending the game with a backhand winner down the line. Plain simple game from the Russian. Taking the game on, it seems Halep has no answers.

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Sharapova (3-2) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

Suddenly, in a space of minutes, Sharapova found herself leading the match against the fourth seeded Romanian. Sharapova survived couple of break points to win the fifth game.

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Sharapova (2-2) Halep

Halep Served. Won by Sharapova.

Sharapova returned to the match. She broke Halep in the fourth game of the first set, as the Romanian failed to keep the rally going. The game lasted three Duece points.

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Sharapova (1-2) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Sharapova.

Maria Sharapova for the first time holds on to her serve. It was comfortable service game from the Russian. Halep failed to match the 2012 French Open champion in this third game.

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Sharapova (0-2) Halep

Halep served. Won by Halep.

The Romanian consolidated the break after fighting from a disadvantageous position. She saved a break point.

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Sharapova (0-1) Halep

Sharapova served. Won by Halep

The first game started with a break of serve, with Simona Halep forcing the Russian a force error after a Deuce.

First Published: Saturday, June 07, 2014, 22:05


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