Simona Halep, tired and aching, reaches Montreal final

Ashleigh Barty Montreal 2018

Barty into semi-finals on Montreal debut

Top seed Simona Halep sent Caroline Garcia packing for the second consecutive year at the Rogers Cup in Montreal on Friday with a 7-5 6-1 win to set up a semifinal showdown with Ashleigh Barty on Saturday.

After a shaky start, Halep won three straight games to take the first set and dominated the second set behind pinpoint serving and stout defence. But she looked extremely upset by her schedule. She contended she has the worst schedule in the 56-player event and "this happens nearly every tournament". I was upset. I am upset. Just try to play as well as I can.

The Romanian broke Barty in the opening game and broke again for a 4-1 lead en route to taking the first set.

"I was very sore when I woke up, " Halep said.

Sloane Stephens of the United States hits a forehand against Elina Svitolina of Ukraine (not pictured) in the Rogers Cup tennis tournament at Stade IGA.

Top-seeded Halep won four of the match's first five games, and broke Barty twice before the 22-year-old Australian registered her first, and lone, break in the sixth game.

Fans and journalists questioned her decision to play singles and doubles with Schuurs given she's expected to come back on court for their semifinals to Nicole Melichar and Kveta Peschke; in the other semifinal Latisha Chan, keeping alive her hopes of reclaiming the World No.1 ranking from Timea Babos, and Ekaterina Makarova will face Andreja Klepac and María Jose Martínez Sánchez.

"I think I talked enough about it", she said. "You want to play as many matches as you can to get used to the conditions, and obviously if you don't do so well in singles, it's always nice to be able to go out and play a doubles match". "I pushed her very back on her backhand, then I could just receive a shorter ball, an easier ball for me to open the court".

With the win Stephens advances to her second consecutive Rogers Cup semifinal after falling to Caroline Wozniacki a year ago.

Halep will play for the title Sunday against the victor of the semifinal between third-seeded Sloane Stephens and fifth-seeded Elina Svitolina.

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