Halep reaches Italian Open final with 10th straight win


Djokovic, beaten in the final by Britain’s Andy Murray a year ago, will now face Juan Martin del Potro in the quarters after the unseeded Argentinian’s 7-6 (7/4), 6-3 win over Japanese seventh seed Kei Nishikori.

Halep, who reached the French Open final in 2014, now meets Bertens after the 15th seed, ranked 20th in the world, ousted Australian qualifier Daria Gavrilova 6-3, 6-3.

Austria’s Dominic Thiem, who sent seven-time champion Rafael Nadal crashing out in their quarter-final, is set to face the victor of the Djokovic-Del Potro quarter-final later in the day.

But their quarter-final match has yet to be completed after play was halted with Del Potro leading 2-1 in the second set.

She then romped to a 4-0 lead in the second set before Bertens held serve.

In the other semifinal, 16th-seeded Alexander Zverev was playing big-serving John Isner.

Romania’s Simona Halep reached her first final in the WTA event at the Rome Masters on Saturday after sweeping Dutchwoman Kiki Bertens 7-5, 6-1 in their semi-final clash. After getting broken in that game she held at love in her next service game to end the set.

The Romanian player, who recently claimed the title at the Madrid Open on May 13, staged another high-level performance on Saturday to beat her Dutch opponent 7-5, 6-1 in 76 minutes, reports Efe.

Bertens committed 31 unforced errors to Halep’s nine.

Halep, who beatKristina Mladenovic to successfully defend her Madrid championship last week, extended her winning streak to 10 matches.

Elina Svitolina caused an upset as she won through to her first semi-final in Rome with a convincing 6-3 7-6 (9/7) victory over second seed Karolina Pliskova.

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