Fighting physical ailments and a feisty opponent, Simona Halep won her round of 16 match against Sabine Lisicki at the 2015 US Open on guts and heart, 6-7 (6) 7-5 6-2, to advance to her first ever quarterfinal at Flushing Meadows. The play on the court wasn’t always pretty or artful, but these two Major runner-ups (Halep-Roland Garros, Lisicki-Wimbledon) gave the Louis Armstrong crowd high drama. Although she is the #2 seed, Simona seems like an afterthought in the media with all the focus on Serena. That could change should Serena beat her sister Venus and Simona beats 2-time US Open runner-up Victoria Azarenka in the next round. That won’t be easy. Vika is starting to get her mojo back after a mostly subpar comeback year. If Simona is physically healthy for that match, it has the potential to be one of the best of the tournament.
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2 SIMONA HALEP (won 6-7 (6) 7-5 6-2 vs 24 Sabine Lisicki)
5 PETRA KVITOVA (won 7-5 6-3 vs Johanna Konta)
20 VICTORIA AZARENKA (won 6-3 6-4 vs Varvara Lepchenko)
26 FLAVIA PENNETTA (won 6-4 6-4 vs 22 Samantha Stosur)