Prague PHOTOS: Halep, Mertens advance to semifinals


Our photographer Jimmie48 continues to diligently cover everything happening at the Prague Open.

After needing three sets to overcome Polona Hercog and Barbora Krejcikova in the first two rounds, top seed Simona Halep spent less than an hour on the court to beat Polish lucky loser Magdalena Frech 6-2 6-0. The 28-year-old Romanian was on a roll as she dominated the last seven games to reach the Prague semifinals in style.

Halep’s next opponent will be either Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo or compatriot Irina-Camelia Begu, who victoriously finished her Thursday’s rain-delayed second-round match against Leonie Kung and then returned to the court to go a set up against Tormo in the quarterfinals when rain and impending darkness forced the remainder of the match to be transferred to Saturday.

Third seed Elise Mertens dug deep in a highly-competitive meeting with Canadian wildcard Eugenie Bouchard to win 6-4 1-6 6-4 and set up a semifinal encounter with Czech Kristyna Pliskova, who had earlier progressed as Ana Bogdan retired in the first set of their quarterfinal. Note, Bogdan received a walkover yesterday when her second-round opponent withdraw and also couldn’t play her doubles match as her partner pulled out of the tournament.

Jimmie48 attended all Friday’s matches, including doubles. Top seeds Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova defeated Veronika Kudermetova and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the quarterfinals, while second seeds Lucie Hradecka and Kristyna Pliskova advanced to the final with a win over Arantxa Rus and Tamara Zidansek.



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