Australia’s Ash Barty has not been able to stop Romania’s Simona Halep charging towards the no. 1 ranking in tennis.
Halep defeated Barty 7-5, 7-5. In both sets Halep was up a break, only to see Barty break back before Halep again would break to win the first set, then the match.Embed from Getty Images
Photo: Simona Halep of Romania is congratulated by Ashleigh Barty of Australia after her win in the quarter finals during day six of the Mutua Madrid Open at La Caja Magica on May 09, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
With Naomi Osaka losing her quarterfinal match against Belinda Bencic, Halep can reclaim the top spot in women’s tennis if she wins the Madrid title.
Bencic defeated Osaka 3-6, 6-2, 7-5 to setup a semifinal against Halep, the top player on clay.
The Swiss player holds a 2-1 lead in the head-to-head, her most recent win coming in Dubai on a hard court.
The other semifinal will see Kiki Bertens facing Sloane Stephens.