Jelena Ostapenko beats Simona Halep to win first Grand Slam

French Open Day 12: Birthday girl Ostapenko to play Halep for title

French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko believes "anything is possible" with the all-out attacking style which brought her a first Grand Slam title.

Having arrived in Paris as the little-known world number 47 from Latvia, Ostapenko leaves as the world number 12 and with her career earnings nearly tripled. Ostapenko made a strong comeback to win six of last seven games of the set as she mixed up the rhythm with consecutive backhand hitting to force a decider at 6-4. "It's odd.' But then in the next couple of years, I understood how to play there, how to move there, and then I really liked it".

"I was just trying to stay aggressive".

Ostapenko beat Olympic champion Monica Puig, former finalist Sam Stosur, former number one Caroline Wozniacki and two-time semi-finalist Timea Bacsinszky on her way to the final.

"I was very close to take the first Grand Slam and also number one in the world", Halep said.

It was not always like that.

Ostapenko was 10 when she first mentioned winning the French Open one day, Jakovleva said.

"She played really well, all the credit". The winners tally by the end of the match was 54 to eight in favour of Ostapenko.

She turned 20 during the tournament and was still a teenager when she lost the first set of her first-round match against Louisa Chirico of the United States.

Her father Jevgenijs was a goalkeeper with Ukrainian club Metalurh Zaporizhya and her mother Jelena Jakovleva is a tennis coach. "It hurts a lot, and I need time just to - I don't know [to make it] go away". I'm so happy. I knew Simona was a great player.

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"Even when she got to the quarter-finals she was happy but not excited". She felt like it was quite okay for her to be where she was. Her attitude clearly reflects in her style of play, an all out victor laden approach, not caring about the unforced errors leaking points. That's unbelievable. There's not so many players like that'.

Recalling her first experience of grass aged 15, she said: "When I first played on it, I didn't like it at all". She also coped brilliantly with the occasion in what was just her eighth Grand Slam event.

"I can not believe I am champion at 20 years old". Jelena recovered from the early loss and played ferociously which saw her win the next two sets comfortably by 6-4, 6-3.

"When I first played on it, I didn't like it at all".

Halep told Ostapenko to enjoy the moment.

"She only has one game, either I can't touch it or it flies one metre out".

Next up on the Grand Slam circuit is Wimbledon where Ostapenko was junior champion in 2014.

Ostapenko came back from 0-3 down in the second set to take control with some fearless groundstrokes during the two-hour contest.

And what of the beaten finalist, the woman who was many people's tip to win the title here after a superb clay season: semis in Stuttgart, title in Madrid and the final in Rome.

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