Trophée Clarins: Simona Halep hit with bad luck as injury forces her to retire

Halep's return to action at this week's Trophée Clarins didn't really go well.

by Dzevad Mesic
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Trophée Clarins: Simona Halep hit with bad luck as injury forces her to retire
© Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

Simona Halep's return to action hasn't gone as well as the two-time Grand Slam champion was forced to retire midway through her opener at a WTA 125 tournament in Trophée Clarins.

On Wednesday, Halep - who received a main draw wildcard into Trophée Clarins - started her clay season by playing against world No. 123 McCartney Kessler. 

Early in the match, Halep looked solid and even managed to go up by a set on 24-year-old American Kessler. But then midway through the second set while 2-3 down to Kessler, Halep retired the match after she was previously spotted holding on to her knee. 

However, knee issues were nothing new for Halep as before Trophée Clarins, the former world No. 1 skipped Oeiras and Madrid because of a knee injury. 

For Halep, this was the start and end of her clay season since on Tuesday she learned that she wasn't selected for either a French Open main draw or qualifying wildcard.

Simona Halep
Simona Halep © Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill
 

How the match went before Halep retired against Kessler?

Early in the first set, Halep was twice down by a break to Kessler after suffering breaks in the third and seventh games. However - on both occasions - Halep instantly got the break back after breaking Kessler in the fourth and eighth games. 

After twice recovering from a break down, Halep found herself in a new trouble after dropping her serve in the ninth game as Kessler opener a 5-4 lead and had a chance to serve out for the first set. On the verge of losing the first set, Halep impressively responded as she claimed back-to-back breaks and won the next three games to overturn the deficit and steal the first set from Kessler. 

Down by a set, Kessler started the second set by breaking Halep in the opening game of the second set. In the fifth game, Halep saved a break point to cut the second-set deficit to 2-3 but moments later retired from the match.

Simona Halep
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