Halep, Badosa set up first meeting in Madrid second round

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Two-time Madrid Open champion Simona Halep and new world No.2 Paula Badosa will face each other in the event’s second round after winning their openers on Thursday.

Simona Halep Madrid Open
Simona Halep was the Madrid Open champion in 2016 and 2017 and was runner-up in 2014 and 2019.

In a match-up between two 30-year-olds, Simona Halep converted all five of her break points to beat Zhang Shuai 6-2 6-3 under the roof on a rainy morning. This is the Romanian’s 11th appearance at the Madrid Open and she has reached the final a tournament-record four times.

Paula Badosa, who became the top seed after the withdrawal of Iga Swiatek, saved all five break points she faced in a 6-3 6-0 victory over Veronika Kudermetova. Last year, Badosa reached the semifinals at the Madrid Open as a wildcard ranked No.62, while now the Spaniard competes on a career-high ranking of No.2.

Defending champion Aryna Sabalenka is out of the tournament in the first round, having fallen to Amanda Anisimova 6-2 3-6 6-4. This was the American’s first main-draw match win in Madrid.

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