Paula Badosa’s Wimbledon 2022 dream was ended in the round 16 as in 2021. However, she received a surprise jug full of cold water following the high level of play that the Spanish showed in her three previous matches. Simona Halep proved to be an unsurmountable obstacle, and there was no way around it. The Romanian needed exactly one hour to reach the quarterfinals and keep Badosa’s roof up on the ceremonial grass of London in round four.

Badosa’s staging was forceful and firm, just like her third round match against Petra Kvitova in Czech. Another Wimbledon champion was forced to accept the Spanish’s first serve. The Romanian won her first serve and the Romanian was up in one piece. Although she lost her first ‘break ball’ against the net, she didn’t let it pass twice. She signed the break of her opponent’s service to start the first set. Badosa was an early riser in backhand, and she managed to retain over 90% of games so far in this tournament.

The Spaniard was too hasty, looking for winners rather than playing safe. Halep displayed a huge array of resources to break set with another “break”, this blank and without any option for Badosa, who was undoubtedly at the same level as the rest. Halep initiated another blank game. A new shipwreck occurred at the serve Spanish. She missed the seventh game with 40-15 to her advantage. The first quarter ended in 23 minutes.

Constanza’s tennis player seemed determined to speed up a day marred on center court by the long-awaited encounter between Nick Kyrgios and Brandon Nakashima, the enfant terrible in world tennis. The start of the second quarter was a sign of pessimism, with another blank game for the Romanian. Badosa’s performance was so good that there was no alternative, to add the second game to the duel and cause trouble for the rival service. She is now a mature tennis player with the mental strength and ability to overcome difficult moments.

The Grand Slam double winner was at an extraordinary level, with her best moments and a brilliant defense. Badosa was not surprised to celebrate at 2-2 and fight to preserve equality in the second set. This was her last joy as she struggled to defend her serve. Halep’s winners flowed smoothly and it was her last joy. With less than an hour played, she was two steps away (2-4) from victory due to too many unforced mistakes by the Spanish.

After another loss in white, Badosa put her index finger on her temple. Halep was subtracting her points to make her a Wimbledon player, and Badosa claimed serenity. But there was nothing she could do. Badosa left London with a bittersweet aftertaste. She was able to enjoy a few moments of first-level tennis, but she also recorded the worst epilogue to her journey through English grass.