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Tennis: Svitolina defends Italian Open title as Halep injured again

AP , Sunday 20 May 2018
Kontaveit
Tennis - WTA Premier 5 - Italian Open - Foro Italico, Rome, Italy - May 19, 2018 Ukraine's Elina Svitolina celebrates winning her semi final match against Estonia's Anett Kontaveit REUTERS
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Elina Svitolina faced little resistance from Simona Halep in a 6-0, 6-4 win Sunday to defend her Italian Open title.

Just like in last year's final, Halep appeared bothered by an injury.

The top-ranked Romanian called a trainer onto the court for an apparent back problem while trailing 2-3 in the second set then exited the court for treatment under a medical timeout.

Last year, Halep rolled her ankle in the final and lost a set lead to Svitolina.

This time, Svitolina didn't face a single break point in a match that lasted just 67 minutes.

The fourth-ranked Svitolina, from Ukraine, became the first woman to defend her title at the Foro Italico since Serena Williams accomplished the feat in 2013 and 2014.

Later, Rafael Nadal was aiming for a record-extending eighth Rome title against defending champion Alexander Zverev.

This is the last major warmup for the French Open, which starts next Sunday.

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