Miami Open: Karolina Pliskova beats Simona Halep, sets up final against Ashleigh Barty
Tennis player Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic advanced to the Miami Open final for the first time after overcoming Simona Halep of Romania on Friday.
The number five seed defeated the number two seed in rain-plagued straight sets 7-5, 6-1.
“I think I played great the second set. I think (Halep) could maybe do a little bit better. Maybe she was, of course, frustrated about the first set where it didn’t really go her way. I played some good shots, and it turned after the break. But, yeah, that’s how it is, and I’m happy with my level,” WTA quoted Pliskova as saying after the match.
The Czech will clash with number 12 seed Ashleigh Barty of Australia to claim her second title of the season following the Brisbane International in January.
“I think (Barty) has a completely different style than these girls which I played. She’s also trying to go for some winners. She’s a slice backhand, she’s a good serve, so she can move pretty well on the court, so she understands the game well, I think,” she said.
“So it’s going to be not only about me this time, which actually now a lot of matches were about me more. So I need to accept when she’s playing well, and I know I can beat her,” Pliskova said.
Halep blasted a backhand down the line to take a 3-2 lead, but Pliskova immediately struck to hold at 3-3. In the middle of the 15-30 point in the next game, rain-plagued. With the weather changing in the middle of the rally, the Czech faced another break point.
After the rain delay, the players returned to the court and Pliskova opened with a double fault, giving the Romanian the break lead again for 5-3. As Halep served for the set, she faltered and ended the game with three straight errors and Pliskova held to lead 6-5.
In an attempt to stay alive in the set, Halep made two more errors and a double fault and on set point, Pliskova won the rally to take a one-set lead. The Czech carried the momentum into the second set, taking a lead at 3-0.
Pliskova earned a second break and reached 5-0 but then the rain returned for over an hour, causing another delay in the Czech’s happiness. As the players came back on the court, Halep tried her best to hold and stop the game slipping from her hands. However, Pliskova held with ease 6-1 and clinched her place in Miami final.