Canadian Open: Simona Halep ‘not upset’ about falling out the world’s top 10

Simona Halep

Simona Halep returns to action at the Canadian Open this week, but no longer as a top 10 player like we’ve become accustomed to seeing in recent years.

The Romanian is a two-time major winner and had been ranked in the world’s top 10 for 373 weeks in a row, dating back to January 2014. But her absence from competition in recent months has now seen her slip down to 13th.

Halep sustained a calf injury that required surgery at the Italian Open, causing her to miss both the French Open and Wimbledon as well as the Olympics.

Her run in the top 10 puts her eighth on the all-time list for this statistic. Martina Navratilova is first with 1,000 consecutive weeks in the top 10.

It’s only now that the streak is over that the 29-year-old looks back and realises the scale of her achievement.

Speaking to WTA insider, Halep admitted: “Now that I have time to think and I have time to see what I did, it’s huge. I’m really proud that I was able to stay so long in the top 10.

“Unfortunately, the injury got me out. I can say that because I wasn’t able to play for three months so I didn’t have the chance to give my best to stay in the top 10.”

The former world number one also said she is not frustrated about dropping down the rankings. Indeed, if she can regain some form and start winning matches again, she’ll no doubt move right back up.

“I’m not sad, I’m not upset, I’m not disappointed. I just take it as a new challenge,” she stressed.

Simona Halep

Having last played a competitive match in May, this is the perfect event for Halep to make her return. She is a two-time winner of this competition in 2016 and 2018 and is seeded sixth for the event this year.

But the Romanian admits she is far from her best level yet. A three-month injury lay-off means her match sharpness may not be there and this tournament may be seen as a chance to simply rediscover some feel on the court.

Halep has a bye through to round two but will face either America’s Danielle Collins or Swiss player Jil Teichmann.

Collins is in fine form at the moment and won her second WTA title at the Silicon Valley Classic last week.

The 27-year-old is now up to 28th in the world rankings and is a former Grand Slam semi-finalist at the Australian Open in 2019.

Simona Halep

There will be no fear on Halep’s part though –– only optimism and relief that she’s finally back on the court again.

While one milestone may have come to an end, a new one may only be getting started.

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