Unseeded Ostapenko wins French Open
Sports

Unseeded Ostapenko wins French Open

Yusuf Busari

Unseeded Jelena Ostapenko fought back to stun third seed Simona Halep and become Latvia’s first Grand Slam champion at the French Open.

The 20-year-old trailed by a set and was 3-0 down in the second to Halep – who would have become world number one with a win – but prevailed 4-6 6-4 6-3.

Ostapenko, ranked 47th, had never won a Tour-level title before and was playing in only her eighth Grand Slam.

She is the first unseeded woman to win at Roland Garros since 1933, BBC reports.

Halep, 25, was playing in her second French Open final, after losing in three sets to Maria Sharapova in 2014.

She had been the tournament favourite this time in the absence of Serena Williams, but again missed out on a first major title.

Attack Beats Defence For Ostapenko

Ostapenko’s carefree attacking tennis ultimately proved too strong for the consistency and experience of Halep, with the favourite helpless by the closing stages.

The difference in approach was clear in the final statistics, Ostapenko ending with 54 winners and 54 errors, to Halep’s eight winners and 10 errors.

Halep looked to have ridden out the storm after twice coming back from a break down to take the first set, with Ostapenko giving it up with her 23rd error and swiping her racquet in frustration.

The Romanian had played the percentages, with just one winner and two errors, and she looked set to end her wait for a major title when she moved 3-0 up in the second.

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