Nerves, frustration and fierce competition

KM 2014Aegon Classic Birmingham, Great Britain

[CR3] Simona Halep (ROU) vs. [CR43] Kristina Mladenovic (FRA)

There was frustration, fierce competition and nerves in this battle between Mladenovic and Halep.  Halep came out firing and won the first set easily. Mladenovic perhaps feeling the pressure of the occasion got off to a very slow start, misfiring on practically every shot. It appeared that Halep had the momentum. What went wrong in the second? Halep lost her focus and completely went away.  Mladenovic took full advantage and won the second set 6-0.

Halep is known to have periods where she disengages from the match and mentally disappears. Perhaps a loss of focus in a few games would not have been so detrimental; however, a whole set was too much to recover from this time and she paid a price as Mladenovic kept the pressure on in the third. Halep never regained the momentum. She was able to force a tiebreak when Mladenovic succumbed to nerves and failed to serve out the match at 5-3.  The tiebreak was a continuation of the battle in the third set. A battle of nerves and the opponent and Mladenovic came out victorious. She defeated Halep for the second consecutive time 2-6, 6-0, 7-6(4).

1 Comment

  1. It became very apparent to me that once her body was there for that set, and her mind was elsewhere, there was no way she was going to win. Mladenovic took advantage of the opportunity of her inability to remain focused, and kept the heat on, knowing that her strategy would pay off – which it did.

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