French Open 2017: Simona Halep battles past Daria Kasatkina

French Open 2017: Simona Halep battles past Daria Kasatkina

After blowing away the Russian in the opening set, Halep fought back to win the final four games of the match to claim a spot in the last 16.

John Lupo

Third seed Simona Halep continued her quest for her first major title with a 6-0, 7-5 victory over 26th seed Daria Kasatkina in the third round of the French Open.

Halep made a brilliant start to the match, barely putting a foot wrong before Kasatkina made a run midway through the second set only to see the Romanian peg her back to claim the win.

Flawless Halep claims opening set

Looking to assert herself after a shaky performance in the last round against Tatjana Maria, Halep was on the front foot from the beginning. After wasting two chances to break, she took her third chance when Kasatkina flew a forehand long. After saving a break point to hold, the Romanian broke again for a 3-0 lead.










Kasatkina was a mess and now barely winning points, she was broken to love. Halep served for the set and after the Russian saved one set point, another error gave Halep the first set in just 28 minutes, a long way back for the 20-year old now.

Halep fights back to claim the second set

It seemed to all be going the way of the odds-on favorite as she broke early in the second set for a 2-1 lead. A hold consolidated Halep's break and gave her a 3-1 advantage, seemingly on course for a routine win.

She nearly went up a double break in Kasatkina's next service game, but the Russian dug deep and held. That seemed to spur the 26th seed on as she won three more games on the trot to take a 5-3 lead and astonishingly, Kasatkina served for the set.










Halep found another gear and finished strong, winning the last four games, including eight of the final nine points to punctuate her win and send her to a fourth round meeting with 21st seed Carla Suarez Navarro. The Spaniard knocked off 14th seed Elena Vesnina 6-4, 6-4.