Halep suffers a panic attack during a French Open match



FILE – Simona Halep of Romania returns the ball against Paula Badosa of Spain during their match at the Mutua Madrid Open tennis tournament in Madrid, Spain, Saturday, April 30, 2022. The French Open is scheduled to begin on Sunday on the red clay of Roland Garros at the gates of Paris. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez, File)


Two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep said she had a panic attack as she led her second-round match which she ultimately lost at Roland Garros on Thursday.

The 2018 Roland Garros winner said she ‘lost her mind’ and couldn’t concentrate as 19-year-old Qinwen Zheng won 2-6, 6-2, 6-1 at Court Simonne-Mathieu.

“I had a break in the second set, but 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 beat 74th-placed Zheng in January.

Halep said she probably put too much pressure on herself.

“It’s something normal that everyone has. I’ll be better next time, that’s for sure. I don’t have those things, so it was new to me,” she said.

Halep said doctors assured her she was physically fine.

“The post-match was quite difficult. But now I’m fine. I am cured and I will learn from this episode.


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