Maria Sharapova won her second Roland Garros title after defeating first time Grand Slam finalist Simona Halep of Romania 6-4, 6-7, 6-4 on Saturday. This increases Sharapova’s Grand Slam title haul to five. She completed a career Grand Slam back in 2012 when she won the French Open title for the first time. She reached the final in Paris for three consecutive years.
Halep had two chances to serve for the second set but a lucky net cord and poor play led to a tiebreak instead which Sharapova won narrowly.
Sharapova wins €1.65 million in prize money which will put her in second in the all-time WTA prize money leaders just behind Serena Williams. The Russian will grab the number one ranking in the Road to Singapore standings for the WTA Finals.
Maria Sharapova quotes:
“It’s such an emotional victory for me in my career. You know, I have been in many Grand Slam finals, and every one feels very different. I feel as I get older I appreciate those situations so much more. And when it’s over, after it being such an emotional match, everything just kind of lets go.
“You realize you just won another Grand Slam, and Roland Garros at that.”
“It’s really amazing. I feel that I worked to get to this position. There’s nothing else. There is no substitute in these titles. You can’t just go out there and do it without putting in the effort, putting in the work. You’re not just born being a natural clay court player – okay, maybe if you’re Nadal, but certainly not me. I didn’t grow up on it; didn’t play on it. I just took it upon myself to make myself better on it.
“There’s no one else that was going to do that for me. I had to do the work.”
“There’s a reason why I haven’t been to one shop while I’ve been in Paris. It’s because I want this. I haven’t eaten many macaroons either. It’s because I want this. All of those things contribute.”
“It’s interesting when the draw comes out. Everyone’s in there. It’s a mixture of older generation, newer generation, people that are somewhere in the middle probably, like me. There are the favorites, the underdogs, the young ones that people are looking towards and believe will be the rising stars.
“This tournament has proven to be that. There were upsets in the beginning. From the beginning of the tournament everyone came in my press conference and the first thing they said was, ‘You’re going to be facing Serena in the quarterfinals. What a tough draw. What bad luck you have.’ We hadn’t even played the first round yet. So from that tough luck to being the French Open champion is very nice. That’s what I say when the draw comes out, that nothing is set in stone. We have to play our matches.”
Simona Halep quotes:
“Yes. I was crying at that moment for a few minutes, and then I was smiling because I told myself it was my first Grand Slam final, and I have to be happy and smile, because I did everything on court. I played very good tennis, a very good level. So I’m really proud about these two weeks. They were incredible weeks here and it was an incredible tournament. It was an amazing feeling on court today.”
“It was an amazing atmosphere out there. I felt all the people with me, saying my name during the games and during the points, so it was an incredible, incredible crowd. I want to thank everybody, and also the Romanians, because they came especially to support me today. I also heard that in my country they were watching the match in the city – so it was just amazing, and I want to thank them.”
“My forehand. I have to work more on my forehand, because I made a few important mistakes in important moments. I’m really happy the way I played, because I think I played my best tennis – but my forehand I want to improve more, and when I hit a forehand cross, hit it more and open the court.
“But it was a good match, and I will take a break from tennis now, then I’ll start working again.”
“That I can play at a very high level. I can play the finals without big emotions. Before at the Grand Slams I couldn’t play my best tennis because I felt the pressure, but here I did play my best tennis.”