Simona Halep manages injury to move within one match of Emma Raducanu meeting
Simona Halep struggled with pain during her second round match but toughed it out to reach the quarter-finals at home in Romania.
The tournament top seed overcame Varvara Gracheva 6-4, 6-2 in a little over 70 minutes on-court at the Transylvania Open.
Though the scoreline may have ended up straightforward, Halep did have to contend with physical difficulties.
Serving at 4-3 in the opening set, the Romanian went wide, lunging for a backhand.
She then pulled up, clutching her lower back. She displayed further discomfort during the match, but was still able to seal victory.
“My back got blocked and the pain is bad,” Halep admitted following her victory.
“You cannot really bend much and you cannot move [that well]. But, sometimes you can handle the pain. I’ve had this before many times. I just wanted to continue, to finish the match.
“It was good that I won this match. I don’t know how, but it’s a good victory.”
Between sets Halep did call the physio to action, taking a medical time out off-court.
In the second set, the world number 18 was not troubled much on her own serve and broke twice to clinch the match.
The result means that Halep will next face compatriot Jaqueline Cristian in the quarter-finals, while third seed Emma Raducanu faces sixth seed Marta Kostyuk in the other quarter-final in the top half of the draw.
Raducanu has spoken on how much of an inspiration Halep has been to her on her journey as a tennis talent. Both players have expressed that they would relish the opportunity to face each other on-court.
The British teenager is enjoying somewhat of a home tournament herself. Her father, Ian, is from Romania.
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