Simona Halep has won her first title under new coach Patrick Mouratoglou, beating Beatriz Haddad Maia to win the Canadian Open.
Halep ended Haddad Maia's dream run in Toronto with a hard-fought 6-3 2-6 6-3 victory on Sunday to claim her third Canadian Open title and ninth WTA 1000 crown.
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Halep's shaky serving from her semi-final on Saturday carried over at the outset of the final as she produced four double faults and was broken in the opening game.
But the Romanian responded by changing her tactics, drawing the Brazilian into longer rallies to reel off six-straight games and sealing the opening set when she blasted a forehand winner.
Haddad Maia dominated the second set but got tight in the decider, badly missing a forehand wide to hand Halep a 4-1 lead she would not relinquish.
The two-time grand slam champion sealed her ninth WTA 1000 title when Haddad Maia's service return found the net on match point.
Halep was spotted embracing Mouratoglou after the match as the pair celebrated their first title together.
“I’m exhausted,” Halep said after the match.
“Today was a tough battle and a great fight. Beatriz has done a brilliant job all week so well done to her.
“A few months ago I was not thinking that would be lifting this trophy. Thanks to Patrick and for him believing in me. Hopefully I made him proud even if I didn’t play great, but I fought.
“Hopefully we can have many more titles together.”
— Lukas Weese (@Weesesports) August 14, 2022
Halep's triumph marks her most significant honour since winning the title in Rome in 2020.
The 30-year-old former World No.1, who had nine double-faults in the match compared to Haddad Maia's two, left the door open for the South American, who was vying for victory in her first ever WTA 1000 event.
Halep had already clinched a return to the world top 10 by reaching the final in Toronto, the first time since her 373-week stint ended just over a week ago - which led to admissions that she had considered calling it quits amid her decline.
A valiant comeback in 2022 has been one of the major stories of the calendar year, and on the back of victory in Canada and a semi-final march at Wimbledon, Halep will now have high hopes for the US Open.
Simona Halep's first title with Patrick Mouratoglou
Halep shocked the tennis world in April when she revealed that Mouratoglou had become her full-time coach despite the Frenchman still being tied to Serena Williams.
Mouratoglou later announced that he'd split with Williams, revealing that he couldn't sit around and wait any longer for the 23-time grand slam champion to return to the tour after a lengthy absence.
"I wanted to be fair to her and not be disappointed at the end of my career," he said.
"I went to ask her what she was going to do. It was very clear to her.
"I asked her if she wanted to go to Roland Garros. She told me she didn't know.
"It was six weeks before the tour. I told her I was waiting for her on Monday for training and if she didn't come I would consider myself free."
The Frenchman had worked with Williams since 2012, helping her win 10 of her 23 grand slam titles and an Olympic gold medal.
"I missed it big time. Coaching is the passion of my life. It’s the job of my life," he told Tennis Majors.
"And when I went to see Serena to discuss before starting with Simona, that’s what I told her.
"I said, ‘coaching is the passion of my life and it’s difficult for me not to work.’ So yes, I missed coaching big, big time.
"Honestly, since I’m back to coaching with Simona, I cannot be happier. It’s an incredible satisfaction for me to do that job. It’s incredible."
Congratulations Simona Halep! 💯
Just 3 months after having Patrick Mouratoglou as her coach, the Former World No. 1 returns to winning ways 🏆
An ideal preparation ahead of the US Open ✌🏻#Tennis #Halep #Toronto #USOpen pic.twitter.com/5Li6LLxtSw
— Sportskeeda Tennis (@SK__Tennis) August 14, 2022
Halep gets it done in Toronto - third title, first there (the other two in Montreal).
She said in D.C. that coach Mouratoglou wouldn't be able to make it to NA until Cincy because of his kids.
But he was able to make it to Toronto. pic.twitter.com/HHBl6XI3aQ
— Stephanie Myles (@OpenCourt) August 14, 2022
Had to feel good for Simona Halep to finish with a service winner, after all her struggles with that shot. She wins tough-it-out matches over Gauff, Pegula, and Haddad Maia for third title in Canada, and most important so far with Patrick Mouratoglou. https://t.co/qVKgvpMSwU
— Steve Tignor (@SteveTignor) August 14, 2022
Patrick Mouratoglou blocked me on here for taking the piss out of his 'Ultimate Tennis' doodah which is a shame really because I'd like to congratulate and thank him for putting the fire back in @Simona_Halep's game.
It's SO good to have her back.
— Andrea Cook 🧷 💙 (@F3Lollipops) August 14, 2022
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