Halep faces tough challenge against Azarenka

Halep will face the former world number one in the Round of 16 on Monday at SW19. The Roumanian is coming of three straight set wins in London and is looking to make the Wimbledon quarter-finals for the third time.

Meanwhile, Azarenka has played in just one event this year since returning from the birth of her child and Halep is acutely aware of this fact.

“She was not a mom, so it’s different now,” the world number two joked on wtatennis.com.

“It’s a great thing, what she did. It’s going to be big challenge for me, for sure. Even if she stayed off tour for one year, she’s a tough opponent and a great champion.

“I’m just going there to give my best. Of course I believe I have my chance to win. But like I said, the match is open. I have just to step in and to take my chances.”

The pair have met three times in the past, with Azarenka winning the first two. Their most recent clash at the quarter-finals 2015 US Open saw Halep survive a second set comeback from Azarenka to emerge victorious.

“It’s one of my best matches in tennis,” recollected Halep.

“I remember that I was running pretty well. I was hitting the balls very hard. She was doing the same thing. So the level was very high.

“Also mentally I stayed strong. So I have just to take every ball very important. Every ball, it matters when I play against her. So I have just to be ready, to be fit, to be 100%, to go there and believe that I have my chance.”

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