The 28-year-old Wimbledon champion has solely misplaced twice this 12 months however discovered herself a break down in each units earlier than she recovered to seal her first victory since profitable the Prague Open a month in the past.
World quantity two Halep, who had skipped the US Open attributable to Covid-19 considerations and opted to remain in Europe and apply on the claycourts forward of the French Open, seemed sluggish on the Foro Italico with 14 winners offset by 15 unforced errors.
“I used to be a little bit bit tight in the beginning, it was powerful to get a rhythm in the entire match,” Halep informed reporters.
“It is at all times powerful within the first match of the event and she or he performed very well. I felt like I performed very effectively when wanted.”
Probably the greatest factors of the match and it goes to @Simona_Halep! #IBI20 https://t.co/iKYxzMw2iX
— wta (@WTA) 1600257630000
Halep had obtained a bye into the second spherical however was removed from her finest on serve and was damaged 5 occasions within the match.
Nevertheless, Paolini was additionally let down by seven double faults within the match and Halep capitalised on her second serve, profitable 15 of 17 factors to take the opening set.
She switched gears late within the second to take the sport away from the Italian, who was enjoying a top-10 participant for less than the second time in her profession, as Halep completed the match after changing her eighth break level.
Second seed Karolina Pliskova began her title defence with a 6-3, 6-Three win over Barbora Strycova, changing 4 break factors and smashing 26 winners previous her Czech compatriot.
In the meantime, Belarusian Victoria Azarenka beat American Venus Williams 7-6(7), 6-2 to arrange a second-round conflict with third seed Sofia Kenin.
.@vika7 switched it up!#ShotOfTheDay | #IBI20 https://t.co/n3y0E8vsNK
— wta (@WTA) 1600292880000
After profitable the Western & Southern Open final month and shedding the US Open last in New York over the weekend, Azarenka had no issues switching from hardcourt to clay in simply 4 days.
“Completely different floor was positively difficult however I really feel like I tailored very effectively,” Azarenka stated. “I felt that this was an important match for me to determine it out, the primary match on clay.