Halep stunned by Kanepi in US Open first round

US Open 2017: Simona Halep knocked out by Kaia Kanepi in first round

Kaia Kanepi defeated Halep 6-2, 6-4 on Monday in the first round in NY. She then reached the final in Cincinnati, making her a favorite at the U.S. Open. "I remembered how I played her last time [in a three-setter four years ago]".

"I have always loved being in NY", said the 33-year-old Kanepi, twice a quarter-finalist at the tournament who has been ranked as high as world number 15.

Frustration boiled over for the Romanian No.1 as she destroyed her racquet early in the second set but she showed great fight to recover both the two breaks she suffered to keep her hopes alive.

The Estonian got off to a quick start in the match, as she won five of the first six games of the first-ever main-draw match played on the second-largest court at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.




It was the sixth time in the Open era that the number one seed has lost in the first round of a Grand Slam tournament and the first at the U.S. Open.

"I love opening for Serena Williams", Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Kelly Clarkson told the crowd before she launched into her anthem Stronger.

"I feel pretty good", Williams said.

At night, defending champion Rafael Nadal advanced when the man he beat in the 2013 French Open final, David Ferrer, stopped in the second set because of an injury, while 2009 champ Juan Martin del Potro had no trouble dismissing Donald Young 6-0, 6-3, 6-4. Kanepi said after the match that her key to success was "staying aggressive all the time", which paid off as she was able to repeatedly break Halep's serve. It happened twice to Martina Hingis and once to Steffi Graf at Wimbledon, once to Angelique Kerber at the French Open and once to Virginia Ruzici at the Australian Open. Monday's victory was Kanepi's first win over a top-20 player since 2015. So, yeah, I'm a little bit disappointed that I didn't make that game.

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