Tennis: Halep experiences panic attack during French Open match

AP , Friday 27 May 2022

Two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep said she had a panic attack while leading her second-round match that she eventually lost at the French Open on Thursday.

Simona Halep
Romania s Simona Halep returns the ball to China s Qinwen Zheng during their women s singles match on day five of the Roland-Garros Open tennis tournament at the Court Simonne-Mathieu in Paris on May 26, 2022. (AFP)


The 2018 Roland Garros winner said she ``lost it'' and couldn't regain focus while playing 19-year-old Qinwen Zheng, who won 2-6, 6-2, 6-1 at Court Simonne-Mathieu.

``I had a break in the second set, but then something happened. I just lost it,`` the 30-year-old Romanian said in her post-match press conference. ``It was just a panic attack. It happened. I didn't know how to handle it because I don't have it often.''

Halep, the 2019 Wimbledon champion, had already amassed 20 wins this season and had beaten 74th-ranked Zheng in January.

Halep said she likely put too much pressure on herself.

``It's something normal that everybody has. I will be better next time, for sure. I don't have these things so it was new for me,`` she said.

Halep said she was assured by doctors that she's OK physically.

``After the match was pretty tough. But now, I'm good. I'm recovered, and I will learn from this episode.''

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