Simona Halep admits she feared she had blown another chance to lift a Grand Slam trophy, before battling back to claim the Roland Garros title.
Halep ended her wait for a first major at the fourth time of asking on Saturday after she came from a set down to beat Sloane Stephens 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.
After losing the opening set, the Romanian began to worry that she was heading for a third final defeat at Roland Garros.
But Halep used the experience of last year’s final, when unseeded Jelena Ostapenko fought back from a set down against her to win the trophy.
“I felt ‘it’s gone, it’s not going to happen again, but it’s OK. I have just to play’,” said Halep.
“When I started to win games, I said that last year the same thing happened to me. So I said there is a chance to come back and win it.
“I believed in that, and my game was more relaxed. I could make more things on court, and that’s why I could win.
“It’s a special moment. I was dreaming for this moment since I started to play tennis.
“Roland Garros is my favourite Grand Slam. I always said that if I’m going to win one, I want it to be here.”
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