Former British No. 1 Tim Henman has applauded Simona Halep for openly speaking about suffering a panic attack. In the French Open second round, Halep suffered a surprise three-set defeat versus Zheng Qinven. Halep appeared to be in full control of the match as she was up by a set and a break versus Zheng.
Just when it seemed Halep would easily win in straight sets, she lost the next eight games as Zheng claimed a 2-6 6-2 6-1 win. After the match, Halep revealed she had a panic attack on the court. Henman thinks Halep openly speaking about it can help those who are going through similar issues.
“I think it is so brave and so honest for Simona to come in and talk about what happened to her. Because I feel that can really have a positive impact on others, if they are struggling with a mental health issue that they have the bravery to speak about it and go and get help," Henman said on Eurosport.
Henman: Classy from Halep
"Simona has been around for many years, she has won big titles so it just goes to show that it can happen to anyone. I thought it was amazing, really classy, after a really difficult defeat under difficult circumstances to come out and speak," Henman added.
After the loss, Halep admitted she didn't know how to react. “It was a panic attack. I didn’t know how to handle it because I don’t have them often. I lost it, I couldn’t focus. But now I’m good, I’m recovered and I will learn from this episode," Halep said.
In her first clay tournament of the year, Halep made the Madrid quarterfinal before losing to Ons Jabeur. In Rome, Halep suffered a second round defeat versus Danielle Collins. Halep was hoping to make a deep run at the French Open but her campaign ended with a second round defeat.