'This is brutal': Star's bizarre mid-point act in Aus Open drama

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·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
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Simona Halep (pictured left) bending over in pain and Alize Cornet (pictured right) celebrating after her win at the Australian Open.
Simona Halep (pictured left) and Alize Cornet (pictured right) played out a thrilling match in sweltering heat on Rod Laver Arena at the Australian Open. (Images: Eurosport/Getty Images)

Simona Halep and Alize Cornet were left utterly exhausted as they battled it out in the brutal Melbourne heat at the Australian Open, and the Romanian star even stopped mid-point during one rally due to the conditions.

Cornet reached the round of 16 after producing the shock of the tournament to date after knocking out Spanish star Garnbine Muguruza.

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And she reproduced some of the exact same blistering tennis to take the first set against two-time grand slam champ Halep.

However, both Halep and Cornet were left seeking the shade and taking long breaks in between games after the gruelling 33C heat started to take its toll.

Both players looked exhausted as it was locked at 3-3 in the second, before Cornet suffered a mini-meltdown and allowed Halep to win the next three games without dropping a point.

Before Halep's resurgence, she was utterly exhausted and was forced to take refuge at the back of the caught between games.

She also stopped mid-point, during one rally, to put her hands on her knees before realising it wasn't over and attempting a forehand.

Fans watching praised the players for their gutsy determination in the brutal conditions on Rod Laver Arena.

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The veteran Cornet ended up prevailing in the war of attrition after taking the deciding set 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.

Cornet is playing her 63rd grand slam and remarkably her 60th in a row.

The 32-year-old collapsed to the court after winning the match and was seen crying tears of joy at her chair.

The French star will player her first Australian Open quarter-final against American Danielle Collins.

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