French Open: Pressure no problem for Halep as she kicks off Roland Garros campaign with win

By Sports Desk May 24, 2022

Former world number one Simona Halep says she will put "as much pressure as possible" on herself as she seeks French Open glory.

The 2018 Roland Garros champion came through her first-round clash against 18-year-old lucky loser Nastasja Schunk 6-4 1-6 6-1 on Tuesday.

Number 19 seed Halep, who is now coached by Serena Williams' former coach Patrick Mouratoglou, has played 42 main-draw matches at the French Open – more than any other player in this year's competition.

Asked if that experience brings with it more pressure, Halep told a media conference: "Well, hopefully I put as much pressure as possible on myself because I love pressure. It's good to have it and it keeps you focused.

"Everyone is playing well, so it's a big challenge every match. We are at Grand Slam, so it's always tough. But I'm here to face these challenges, and I'm here to give my best.

"So, I will focus on myself. I will try to do what I have to do, and that's it. Then we will see.

"I will think about the next round only, and then if I will win it, I will think about the next one.

"I don't want to look further than that. It's important to just stay focused and to play the next match."

Halep will face Zheng Qinwen in the second round after the Chinese player overcame Maryna Zanevska 6-3 6-1 on Monday. 

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