Paris (AFP) – Quick glance at 2018 French Open champion Simona Halep:
— Saturday’s final was her fourth at the majors, having lost her previous three. She looked in danger of flopping again when she slipped a set and break down to Sloane Stephens.
— Last year, the 26-year-old Romanian squandered a set and 3-0 lead to lose the Paris title match to Jelena Ostapenko. In the 2014 final, she also lost in three sets to Maria Sharapova. At this year’s Australian Open, she was defeated in the final by Caroline Wozniacki, again in three sets.
— When she was a teenager, Halep underwent breast reduction surgery for personal comfort and to ease her movement around the court. “I would have gone for surgery even if I hadn’t been a sportswoman,” she said.
— Halep is also a committed businesswoman. As well as buying up property, she opened her own restaurant, called ‘SH’ in her home town of Constanta.
— Praised for her modesty on and off court, Sports Illustrated has described her as an ‘anti-diva’.
On Saturday, she said: “In the last game I felt like I could not breathe anymore.”