After as many as five lost opportunities to take the No.1 ranking, Simona Halep has finally achieved the feat this week by reaching the final of the China Open with a 6-2 6-4 victory over Jelena Ostapenko. Dethroning current No.1 Garbine Muguruza, Halep has become the 25th woman in WTA history to hold the top spot, and the first one from Romania.
The 26-year-old Halep’s first chance to win the coveted ranking was actually against Ostapenko, who then stunned her in the French Open final to win the first title of her young career. Four more chances followed — at Eastbourne, Wimbledon, Cincinnati and the US Open — and now, in a rematch of the French Open championship match, Halep finally grabbed the No.1 ranking on her sixth try, exuding composure against inconsistent Ostapenko.
The second-seeded Halep, who will officially be the No.1 on Monday, October 9th, opened the semifinal match with a love break and closed it with a love hold, imposing superior serve throughout, winning 75% of points on her first serve during the encounter that lasted one hour and 15 minutes.
The China Open has been really remarkable for Halep, as she has not only won the top ranking and avenged her Roland Garros loss to Ostapenko, but earlier in the week she also avenged her first-round US Open loss to Maria Sharapova and her recent Wuhan defeat to Daria Kasatkina.
Should have been the same scoreline in the French Open final. Congratulations Simona. She looks absolutely delighted.
I am so bored with who is number one and when Simona Halep will get to be it and what game she will need to win to get the points. At least now maybe everyone will stop talking about her. I have nothing against her, but I have no idea why she is such a favourite. She doesn’t seem to have a particularly interesting game. I guess its because Serena and Maria and Victoria are all out of action, or Maria has been and is just coming back, that the next level of people are all alternating for no 1 depending on who has won recently. VERY boring.
Wanted to see Garbine hang on to that No. 1 ranking a little more but congrats to Simona, happy she finally got there. I don’t see her being there for very long but I hope she makes the most out of it, she’s a nice player.
This year, we saw a lot of changes in the number 1 ranking. I think with Simona’s consistency, we can see a longer period where she’s number 1 until Serena comes back stronger. Garbi is also playing well. I think it’s an exciting race for year end no. 1.
Emman Damian, since Halep’s first chance to grab the top spot, two players have held it, Pliskova and Muguruza, if we don’t count Kerber, then the reigning No.1.
Do you think other players can still grab it? I think Elina Svitolina has a chance if she performs well in the YE championships.
Emman Damian, I also think so. She’s not defending YEC points and the tournament offers a lot of points, so sure she has a chance.