Wednesday, October 22, 2014 12:58 pm
The diminutive Romanian, who was 0-3 against Williams, took advantage of the American’s horrendous serving to clinch the biggest match win of her career and go top of Red Group in the eight-player season finale.
The 23-year-old world number four was the aggressor all the way, moving Williams, 10 years her senior and the oldest competitor in Singapore, from corner to corner with pinpoint ground strokes.
The most formidable serve in women’s tennis deserted Williams, who was broken five times and notched seven double faults.
“My serve was at best in the 10 and under division in juniors,” Williams quipped after the match.
“Yeah, it was actually embarrassing,” she added. “Yeah, very embarrassing.”
It was Williams’ worst result since 1998 when she lost 6-1, 6-1 to Joannette Kruger in Oklahoma City.
Halep earlier beat Eugenie Bouchard of Canada, while Williams defeated Ana Ivanovic in her opening match in Singapore.
But Williams, who withdrew from this month’s China Open with a left knee problem, said fitness had nothing to do with her loss.
“I think Simona played really well and (won) the best match of her career,” she said, adding that she would “work hard and particularly train for her” when they meet again.