Former world number one Simona Halep on Monday won the women’s singles title at the Italian Open, earning the win after defending champion and longtime rival Karolina Pliskova was forced to retire due to injury in the second set while trailing 0-6, 1-2 in the summit clash.Also Read - Wimbledon: Hope I Made Evonne Cawley Proud, Says Ash Barty After Title Win

Halep, who had reached back-to-back finals in Rome back in 2017 and 2018, took the upper hand in the opening set, winning it 6-0. She emerged on top at the exchange of breaks early in the second set when the No.2 seed, who had taken a brief medical timeout between sets, bowed out after 32 minutes of play. Also Read - Did You Know: Wimbledon Champion Ash Barty Was Once a Cricketer, Played in WBBL For Brisbane Heat

Pliskova had entered the match with her left thigh wrapped up and had to undergo treatment on her lower back and upper leg after the first set which she lost in just 20 minutes. Also Read - Match Highlights Wimbledon 2021 Women's Singles Final: Ash Barty Wins Championship Title After Beating Karolina Pliskova

This was the 12th face off between Halep and Pliskova in their careers, and though the Romanian led the overall head-to-head prior to the final, it was Pliskova who had won three of their last four meetings.

Halep, who won the Prague Open title upon tour’s resumption following the Covid-19 induced hiatus, is now on a 14-match winning streak.