Romanian tennis player Simona Halep on Sunday defeated Great Britain’s Johanna Konta 6-1 6-3, in their Fed Cup by BNP Paris Bas World Group II playoff tie hosted by Tenis Club IDU of Mamaia, giving Romania a 2-1 lead.
World number five Halep prevailed over number seven Konta in one hour and 22 minutes.
Simona has definitely dominated the first set, leading 4-0 before Konta won her only game, finishing the match 6-2 in 27 minutes.
The second set was more balanced, with Konta managing a breaker as the score was tied at 1-1, running away at 3-1 after fending off three breakers. Halep bounced back spectacularly, to the public’s cheers, and managed five consecutive games, closing the set with one ace.
Halep scored three aces, but she also made three double faults, with 17 winners and 22 unforced errors. Konta managed just one ace, made two double faults, scored 15 winners and made 36 unforced errors.
Simona Halep (25, 5th WTA) had defeated Heather Watson (24, 113th WTA) 6-4, 6-1 on Saturday, at the Tenis Club IDU in Mamaia, in the first match counting for Fed Cup World Group II between Romania and UK. Halep won in 69 minutes.
The second match of the say was interrupted by incidents. Johanna Konta (25, 7th WTA) defeated Sorana Cîrstea (27, 62nd WTA) 6-2, 6-3. Due to heath problems Irina Begu was not able to play according to the schedule and was replaced by Sorana Cirstea. The match was interrupted for 15 minutes in the second set, Cirstea leading 3-1.
Romania’s non-player captain Ilie Nastase (photo) allegedly made some offensive comments against the British player and against the chair umpire. He was sent off the court and he was replaced by Monica Niculescu. Later on he allegedly revealed he was nervous because Konta was complaining too much about the wind, about phone calls in the stands and that the chair umpire said nothing about this.
Offensive expressions from the stand have reportedly offended Johanna Konta, who burst into tears minutes later. The match was interrupted for 15 minutes.
Simona Halep made an appeal to the public to have a civilised behaviour, “On behalf of the team, please stop use offensive words, we risk being disqualified and then we could do nothing. We need to have fair-play and just play the game… It’s only a tennis match and the match is played on the court. Please respect both players and, of course, the opponents. Please!” Simona Halep told the public.
The official reason for interrupting the match was the offensive language. The ITF is to take further decisions in the coming days.
On Sunday, as of 11.00h, the other matches will take place: Halep vs. Konta and Cirstea vs. Watson.
The doubles match will be played between Monica Niculescu (23rd WTA in doubles)/ Sorana Cirstea (1,101st WTA in doubles) and Laura Robertson (267th WTA in doubles)/Jocelyn Rae (106th in doubles).
Romania aims to remain in the second echelon of Fed Cup, after being defeated by Belgium 3-1 in February, in the first round of World Group II. The UK aims to advance to World Group II after winning Group C.