‘I was intimidated by Serena, she is so big’ – world number 1 tennis player on Williams
Halep has stormed to tennis stardom this season, drastically improving her rankings after reaching the Australian Open final and winning the most prestigious clay court tournament – the French Open.
Last week, she reached the final of the WTA Cincinnati, where she was surprisingly beaten by Dutch underdog Kiki Bertens in a three set thriller 2:6, 7:6, 6:2. This was Halep’s third unsuccessful attempt to win the tournament in Cincinnati, as she lost to Williams and Spain’s Garbine Muguruza in her two previous finals in 2015 and 2016.
Speaking at the press conference before Sunday’s clash with Bertens, the Romanian said she didn’t know whether her recent tennis progress could be an intimidating factor for her opponents, but did say that she had been frightened of Williams at one point.
“I can say I was, back a while ago, I was intimidated by Serena (Williams) because she’s so big, she’s huge, but with other players, no, I haven’t been. Please.” Halep was quoted as saying by Tennis World USA.
This week, Halep was expected to compete at the Connecticut Open, the final US Open warm-up event, but withdrew from the tournament citing an Achilles tendon injury.