Woman of the week: Simona Halep
The new Dubai Duty Free Women’s Open Tennis Champion has risen rapidly up the world rankings ever since she underwent radical breast-reduction surgery.EDGAR staff February 22, 2015
It's been rather a good couple of days for Romanian tennis star Simona Halep. First of all, on Saturday she won the Dubai Duty Free Women's Open, pocketing a handy $456,000 (AED 1.67 million) prize fund and securing her place as the new world number three, and now - admittedly slightly less lucrative, yet still important - she's taken our Woman of the Week title!
Halep overcame the testing weather conditions and a tough competitor in her Czech counterpart Karolina Pliskova, to win the final in straight sets, 6-4, 7-6, and take her second title win of the season and her first in Dubai.
With such obvious talent that's propelled her to the world's number three, one would assume that success had always been on the cards for Halep. However, despite showing promise in her early career and finding some success in smaller tournaments, it was clear that she was at something of a natural disadvantage to her competitors... Namely her breasts, which were hindering her movement on court.
While she had a serve to rival the world's best, getting around the court quickly was a problem, and Halep was even suffering from back pain due to having to carry around the extra weight. So, at just 18 years old, Halep took the decision to undergo breast-reduction surgery, dropping from a curvaceous 34DD to a slightly more modest 34C.
And what a decision that would turn out to be, as she made her post-surgery comeback at the French Open in 2010, and despite crashing out of that competition early, since then her upturn in form has been so miraculous that she's risen more than 250 places in the world rankings since the surgery.
While she still doesn't have a Grand Slam title to her name (the closest she's got was her loss to Maria Sharapova in the final of the French Open last year), now the 23-year-old's full potential has been unlocked after her brave decision to undergo surgery, we get the feeling it won't be long until she's repeating her Dubai win on the very biggest stage.