After two consecutive first-round exits in New York, this time Halep fell within the second-round and after holding a match level, 6-2, Three-6, 6-7(Four), in entrance of a captivated viewers on the primary Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Halep saved a pair of match factors herself on Townsend’s serve at 5-Four within the third however as a substitute of cruising to victory was pegged again within the seesaw tiebreak that in the end went the best way of the world No. 116.
Halep will likely be ruing the match level she missed, too, a makeable forehand return as her foe served and volleyed.
However then once more, the strain exerted by the lefty could not have been something Halep had seen for a very long time — if ever. The way it was all so totally different for Halep at Wimbledon, when she put in a virtuoso efficiency towards Serena Williams within the closing.
Townsend extremely approached the online 105 occasions towards one of many sport’s prime counterpunchers, and regardless that her proportion of factors received — 60 — wasn’t overly excessive, the 23-year-old in the end received crucial ones and by no means let Halep settle right into a groove on the baseline.
“I am not stunned as a result of she will play nicely,” Halep stated in her post-match press convention. “If she involves the online, if she will preserve this rhythm, it is one thing huge. However all the time if you play with prime participant, you don’t have anything to lose. You be at liberty on courtroom. In order that’s why perhaps she was in a position to do it 100% right.”
When requested if she may ever recall a time going through a participant who got here to the online that always, Halep was emphatic along with her response.
“By no means, by no means,” she stated.
Tears of pleasure
Townsend was in tears after gathering her first top-10 win, having been so shut at Wimbledon when she held a match level on Kiki Bertens.
“This implies rather a lot,” Townsend advised the gang. “It has been a protracted journey.”
She later went to to say, “I’ve had shut matches this 12 months and wasn’t in a position to recover from the hump. This match provides me a lot confidence to know I can do it.”
The previous junior No. 1 — who reached a excessive of 61 within the professional ranks final 12 months — was nearly knocked out in qualifying. She trailed Nina Stojanovic within the closing spherical of qualifying by a set and 5-1 in a second-set tiebreak.
Tiebreaks have been a attraction, then.
Townsend’s third-round exhibiting on the US Open matches her greatest ever at a serious, additionally making the third spherical — at her first main on the 2014 French Open.
She’s going to meet one other Romanian subsequent in unseeded Sorana Cirstea.