Published: Sun, August 12, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Halep to face Stephens in Montreal final

Halep to face Stephens in Montreal final

Next up for Halep is Australian Barty, who strolled to a 6-3 6-1 win over Kiki Bertens in their quarterfinal match earlier in the day.

A nervy world No.18 committed 31 unforced errors in blustery conditions as Barty broke Berten's serve four times. The surprise 2017 US Open victor responding by rediscovering the combination of power and unnerving accuracy that had served her well at the start of each set to break straight break and serve out the match with a series of thundering groundstrokes. "During the match, it's not easy to run so much but, you know, I just tried to focus on what I have to play and, to make it a little bit easier, which I did in the end, was to finish it early".

"I think I talked enough about it", she said.

Spaniard Carolina Garcia, the No.6 seed, was combative in the first set before Halep secured a crucial break to win the opener 7-5.

Her latest win means she has claimed eight of her last nine matches on hard courts, though making her third final of the season appears daunting.

With the win Stephens advances to her second consecutive Rogers Cup semifinal after falling to Caroline Wozniacki a year ago.

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US Open victor Stephens will go against Halep on Sunday, having only beaten the Romanian twice in their previous eight meetings. Top-ranked Simona Halep defeated Ashleigh Barty 6-4, 6-1 Saturday to reach the final of the women's Rogers Cup.

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An error-prone Barty was undone by a patient Halep, who employed a strategy based on making a high percentage of first serves and controlling the rallies.

But Halep did not lose a point on her serve the rest of the set, and broke twice more to open the second set.

The American baseliner broke again for 3-1 in the second set and closed it out in 1:38.

"I want to be at my best, compete hard and have fun".

"I've been playing well, consistent and that's great", said Stephens.

Ashleigh Barty and Demi Schuurs are through to their second final together as a pair, seeing off the No.7 seeds Nicole Melichar and Kveta Peschke in straight sets at the Coupe Rogers.

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