Mentally exhausted and injured, Simona Halep opts to pull out of Stuttgart

Simona Halep disappointed

World No 2 Simona Halep’s start to the clay-court season has been delayed as she needs to “relax and recover” after her Fed Cup exertions.

The reigning French Open champion was part of the Romanian team that narrowly missed out on reaching the Fed Cup finals for the first time in history as they lost 3-2 against France.

Halep won her two singles rubbers and then teamed up with Monica Niculescu in the doubles, but they lost against Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic.

She was due to kick off her clay-court campaign at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart this week, but has decided to take a breather.

“It happened against Garcia [in the second singles rubber] in the first set, when I fell down,” she is quoted as saying by “I felt pain in the hip.

“If I’m not 100%, I don’t want to step on the court. I’m also exhausted mentally because I gave my everything in that tie.

“It feels bad because I gave everything. I’ve been very sad for the last two days. I’ve been through these moments many times, but I just need to relax and recover.”

However, she is expected to compete in Rome and Madrid in May.

She added: “I stopped because there’s a two-week break, so it’s enough time to recover. I just want to go home and relax myself.”

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