Romania's Halep qualifies for semis of WTA tournament in Madrid

Romanian tennis player Simona Halep, WTA's 3rd, qualified on Thursday for the semifinals of the WTA tournament in Madrid (Mutua Madrid Open), with total prizes worth 7,021,128 US dollars, after defeating Australian player Ashleigh Barty, with a score of 7-5, 7-5. Halep (aged 27) needed only one hour and 32 minutes to defeat her opponent, WTA's 2nd. Barty (aged 23) came after 11 consecutive victories in the circuit, being the winner of the Miami title and totalising this year 23 victories and 3 defeats. Also attending the event were Nadia Comaneci, President of the Romanian Olympic and Sports Committee (COSR) Mihai Covaliu, President of the Romanian Rhythmic Gymnastics Federation Irina Deleanu, former owner of Formula One Bernie Ecclestone, etc. The Romanian now has 3-1 in direct matches after last summer's victories in Montreal, 6-4, 6-1 in the semifinals and Cincinnati, 7-5, 6-4, in the round of 16. Barty won this year in Sydney with a score of 6-4, 6-4, in the round of 16, in the first event that Simona played this season. Halep, who won the title in Madrid in 2016 and 2017, secured a cheque worth 213,215 euro and 390 WTA points and in the semifinal she will face off the winner of the event between Japanese Naomi Osaka, world leader, and Swiss Belinda Bencic. AGERPRES (RO - author: Mihai Tenea, editor: Teodor Ciobanu; EN - author: Rodica State, editor: Adina Panaitescu)

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