Simona Halep was forced to retire on Wednesday with a calf injury, quitting her second-round match at the Rome Masters against Angelique Kerber.

Third seeded defending champion Halep handed over a 1-6, 3-3 victory to her fellow former Grand Slam winner and WTA No. 1.

The Romanian was felled by a left calf injury after 58 minutes on the clay.  

“Unfortunately, an ultrasound has revealed that I have a tear in my left calf. I will get an MRI tomorrow to understand the injury in more detail, but at the moment, we are unsure of recovery time,” a Halep statement read.

“I’m so disappointed to end my tournament in Rome like this, but I will do everything I can to take care of the injury and be back as soon as possible.”

Kerber, a treble Grand Slam champion, knew she had it all to play for after falling behind from the start.

“I wasn’t looking at the scoreboard, just playing point by point. I was focusing more on my service game, and I was starting  to play better in the second set.

“Then suddenly she called the trainer… and I know that she is not calling trainers just like this.

“I didn’t see the moment, so I don’t know what exactly happened. 

“This is not the way I would like to finish a tough match against a friend on the other side (of the net).”

Kerber will bid for the quarters against another former Roland Garros winner in Jelena Ostapenko after the Latvian beat qualifier Ajla Tomljanovic 6-2, 7-6(3).

Main photo:- Simona Halep is assisted of court with a calf injury – by WTATennis.com

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