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Another mess 2R for Simona but you felt the result was NID. :shrug:

Katya has done really well to climb up the rankings over the last year or so. Has the game to be a solid top20 player, but her mentality :help:
 

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"just a tipical Simona Halep early round performance..."

Simo looked spent and playing in one leg... but a win is a win
 

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That collapse from Alexandrova at 4-4 0-30* on Halep's serve :lol: especially when she had all the momentum breaking back earlier and holding to love.

Mental mug. Great ballstriker but just so unclutch and brainless when it comes to the crucial moments. Lost 11 points in a row from that point on

Another typical Simona early round performance. Got to give her credit for constantly fighting her way through all these tough openers and avoiding those early upsets. It feels like she's down a set and a break everytime R1/R2 but you just know she'll come through them in the end. She's becoming a master at scraping through these matches, which honestly should be routine wins but anyway, a win is a win.
 

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Patches of this match were downright awful. At least there were some nice points from both sides also, but boy, some of the rallies...

Simona should've taken this easy, she was bending over at times and looked tired. I understand wanting to get some matches under her belt before USO (plus she's defending the final here ofc), but she really didn't look that well. Kudos to her for fighting through to win this though.
 
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I thought Alexandrova could win this early in set 2. Bertens lost, Bencic retired, Anisimova withdrew, this is a good section to be in
 

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Did not feel like only a 2 hour match. Alexandrova really impressed losing 2nd set with a break lead and winning 14/15 points on the first serve. Halep hit 9 winners in 31 games.
 

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Simona didn't look fully fit to me, but she got another win. I thought a drop off in Alendrova's 1st serve % in the second set helped Simona back into it.

Well done Simona!
 

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Tough conditions, it's true, but this match was won and lost on Alexandrova's poor mentality. She was in charge in all 3 sets and having one of her days where she strikes the ball really well, but even at the start you felt she wasn't going to be able to finish Halep off. I can't recall if she ever has a coach travelling with her. Wouldn't hurt to use the coaching just to get over that hurdle.

Up a set and a break, totally outplaying Simona, edging towards the finish line and just decided she wasn't going to hit anything into the court. Even in the 3rd set, she was playing amazing tennis to get to 4-4 and just... stopped. I think she lost the last 12/13 points.

If Halep had raised her level in those moments i'd give her the credit (she did play well in the middle of the 2nd set), but honestly this was yet another case of a lower ranked player getting tight and letting a top 10 player off the hook.
 

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Player ranked 43 tough as nails (as expected), Halep starting in a lower gear made Alexandrova look unbeatable.

There are countless players who will serve any top 10 player for lunch given the better rank player is not playing geared enough.
 

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Another Halep-ass win, but a win is a win. I would say she should play one or two more matches max and then rest for the USO, but we all know that's not going to happen since we're talking about Simona Halep here.

She lost in the quarterfinals to Kerber at Eastbourne and then went on to win Wimbledon playing in the most dominant fashion we've ever seen her play. So who knows what we're going to get from one day to the other with her, I'm just here for the show.

Next up should be a good one too, against either Keys (old friend) or Kasatkina (Russian Halep, but like a few years ago Halep, and quite rusty this year).
 

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Simona's "I hope the opponent chokes" strategy pays off again. I guess she deserves credit for winning so many matches where she doesn't really do anything and is visibly outplayed.
She says there was no pain in her Achilles today, so all the leaning over and grabbing at her ankle was more acting/gamesmanship. Maybe it's to give fans like crescentmoon and seychelles an excuse if she loses (as if they wouldn't have one anyway).
 

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Better player lost.
 

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Tough conditions, it's true, but this match was won and lost on Alexandrova's poor mentality. She was in charge in all 3 sets and having one of her days where she strikes the ball really well, but even at the start you felt she wasn't going to be able to finish Halep off. I can't recall if she ever has a coach travelling with her. Wouldn't hurt to use the coaching just to get over that hurdle.

Up a set and a break, totally outplaying Simona, edging towards the finish line and just decided she wasn't going to hit anything into the court. Even in the 3rd set, she was playing amazing tennis to get to 4-4 and just... stopped. I think she lost the last 12/13 points.

If Halep had raised her level in those moments i'd give her the credit (she did play well in the middle of the 2nd set), but honestly this was yet another case of a lower ranked player getting tight and letting a top 10 player off the hook.
From 4-3 30-0 on Halep's serve Alexandrova lost the next 11 points and in the end 12 of the last 13 points of the match. But here's the kicker, overall the Russian won more points, which goes to show that Halep ended up winning the much more important points in key situations. As you said, mental was key here, and that's something Halep has improved in spades here.

Look, fact is Alexandrova is a tricky opponent that could have taken out most top 20 players today, but for better or worse Halep forced herself to stay with her in the match and took full advantage of her inability to finish. Again she could do that because she was always close, even when losing.

The better player doesn't always win the match, case in point Federer against Djokovic at Wimbledon this year. No, sometimes the smarter players wins, and Simona Halep was definitely the smarter player today.
 

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I think Simona is playing just to have some matches under her belt before US Open! Nothing special ...
 

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Anyway, I think it's a good thing Simona's playing this week and avoided the first match flop. She's now guaranteed a top-4 seed in NY unless Svitolina reaches at least the final.
Come to think of it, I'm not sure how much a top-4 seed matters, given Simona just won Wimbledon as the #7, but she's got a good chance to go deep in Cincy and stay in the hunt for YE#1.
 
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