Simona Halep into Australian Open quarterfinals

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MELBOURNE, Australia — Wimbledon champion Simona Halep has reached the quarterfinals at the Australian Open with a straight-sets win over Elise Mertens.

Halep appeared to be cruising after winning the first set and going up a service break in the second, but Mertens broke back to level the second set at 4-4. Halep responded by converting her fifth break-point chance in the next game and served out at love to clinch the match. Halep will next play either Anett Kontaveit or Iga Swiatek.

No. 4-seeded Halep reached the Australian Open final in 2018 and won her first major title at the French Open that year.