Simona Halep Becomes New World Number One in Women's Tennis

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Simona Halep is determined not to rest on her laurels after banishing the pain of several near-misses to become world number one for the first time.

Showing off an improved serve, Halep handled Ostapenko 6-2, 6-4, and previously in the tournament notched her first-ever win over rival Maria Sharapova, exorcising two major demons in the same week. "Many others did it, and I'm one of them", said Halep following her win.

Halep is the 25th player in WTA history and the first Romanian to become world number one, and will replace Spain's Garbine Muguruza at the top of the standings when the official rankings are released on Monday.

Simona Halep surged to number one in the world for the first time and into the final of the China Open as she beat Latvia's Jelena Ostapenko 6-2, 6-4.

The former world No. 1 was forced to retire during her Beijing opener due to illness.

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"Of course it's the best moment in my life, and I want just to keep it", Halep said.

Serving for the victory and the world number 1 spot, Halep blasted 3 winners to book her place in the final, closing the match with a forehand down the line victor after 75 minutes to start a huge celebration of a well-deserved award.

Of the 74 percent of first serves that she was able to make to put Sharapova on the defensive right from the off, Halep was more often than not able to come away victorious, winning 77 percent (24/31) of the points when she managed to land her first delivery. Still, she played really well those games, those next games [after falling 3-2 down].

The Romanian will face France's unseeded Caroline Garcia in Sunday's final after she beat 12th seed Petra Kvitova of Czech Republic 6-3 7-5. And she's back in her third straight semi after beating Sori Cirstea 6-4, 6-4.

Garcia won a similarly upset-filled Wuhan last week (8 of the Top 10 played, only Muguruza made the SFs).

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