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Simona Halep’s new goal? The Olympics

Eastbourne Halep Withdraws

FILE - In this Saturday, June 9, 2018 file photo, Romania’s Simona Halep holds the trophy and celebrates winning the final match of the French Open tennis tournament against Sloane Stephens of the U.S. in three sets 3-6, 6-4, 6-1, at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France. Simona Halep has withdrawn from the International grass-court tournament in Eastbourne, considered a a warmup for Wimbledon, which starts July 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Michel Euler, File)


Now that Simona Halep has her first major title, she enters Wimbledon focused ... on Tokyo 2020.

“The new goal? Actually it’s about the Olympics,” she said Saturday. “I would love to have an Olympic medal. So my focus is on that.”

The top-ranked Romanian claimed her maiden Slam at the French Open on June 9 after losing her three previous Grand Slam finals.

She could become the first Romanian man or woman to win a Wimbledon singles title, but Halep would not be Romania’s first Olympic tennis medalist.

Florin Mergea and Horia Tecău took men’s doubles silver in Rio. Halep skipped the Rio Games, citing Zika virus concerns three weeks before the Opening Ceremony.

Halep did play at the 2012 London Games, losing in the first round when she was ranked No. 48. Her Olympic connections run deeper.

Legendary Romanian gymnast Nadia Comăneci has been to several Halep matches and was one of the first people Halep embraced after her Roland Garros title.

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