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Halep through but Kerber exits in Cincinnati

  • Published at 01:14 pm August 17th, 2018
Halep
Romania's Simona Halep returns against Australia's Ajla Tomljanovic during their Cincinnati Open match in Ohio Wednesday Reuters

Simona Halep had been due to play her third-round match Thursday against another Australian, Ashleigh Barty, but that has been postponed until Friday

Top seed Simona Halep returned to sew up victory over Ajla Tomljanovic Thursday after their second round match at the Cincinnati Open had been suspended the previous day due to rain, while reigning U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens was knocked out in the third round by Elise Mertens.

Stephens, seeded third, fell to the 15th seeded Belgian 7-6 (8) 6-2 and failed to reach the quarter-final for the third time in her past four events.

German fourth seed Angelique Kerber was also upset, going down 2-6 7-6 (3) 6-4 to American Madison Keys, while Aryna Sabalenka beat sixth seed Caroline Garcia 6-4 3-6 7-5.

Keys recorded 55 winners to beat Kerber, a rare victory over the German who has come out on top in seven of their nine meetings.

Halep had been two games away from reaching the third round when rain interrupted her match against Australian Tomljanovic Wednesday, and while the conclusion was delayed again for about four hours Thursday the Romanian wasted little time wrapping it up when she got the chance, sealing it 4-6 6-3 6-3.

Halep had been due to play her third-round match Thursday against another Australian, Ashleigh Barty, but that has been postponed until Friday.

Halep owns a 1-0 career record against Barty, with the win coming last week in the semi-final at Montreal where the French Open champion went on to capture her third title of the season.

Kiki Bertens and Anett Kontaveit had their match suspended due to rain. Bertens took the first set 6-3 and Kontaveit led 4-1 in the second when play was halted.