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Romanian tennis ace and fresh Wimbledon champion Simona Halep said on Monday, upon her arrival at the 'Henri Coanda' Airport from London, that in her All England Club final with Serena Williams she played "the perfect match on the perfect day".

"The final wasn't as easy as it looked like. Emotionally it was difficult, there was a big emotional charge, but I was clear in my tactics. I consider I played the perfect match on the perfect day. I didn't think for a moment about the score or about what happens on court. All I wanted was to do my job and take my chance. Darren Cahill gave me some tips before the final, but it was just some friendly advice. My official coach is now Daniel Dobre," she said.

"Serena has the strongest serve in the women's circuit, but other players in the circuit produce equally powerful forehands and backhands. However, Serena is the best tennis player of all times and stands on top in every way. I felt that Serena pushed it in the second set and I knew I had to give it all for each point, because when she makes a comeback, she does it very well and can dominate the match anytime. So I stayed focused on my tactics and it turned out very good. In the end I had a special meeting, I was very honored to shake hands with the members of the royal family. It was a unique moment to play before the royal family, I was really impressed," added World No. 4.

Simona Halep says her Wimbledon victory is a dream come true, given that there are no grass courts to practice on in Romania. "This is a huge success because, as you know, we don't have grass tennis courts in Romania. As a matter of fact, there aren't many countries to have lawn courts. When we are children it's difficult to think we will ever have the chance to play at Wimbledon and win, but now the dream has come true and I hope to be an inspiration to the young generation. Make them believe in themselves, that everything is possible and never give up. Every time I play I feel the whole public is with me. I don't doubt this in the least, because people have always shown me unconditional support. I will place the Wimbledon trophy next to the Roland Garros one. It's more important than when I became World No. 1. A Grand Slam tournament is always more important and more special to the players," Halep said.

The 27-year-old also explained that throughout her career she had former national football team captain and manager Gheorghe Hagi as a model. "Gheorghe Hagi has been my model ever since I was a kid, he inspired me and made me believe I can make it, although this was about different sports. However, I didn't have a direct relationship with him," Halep said.

World tennis No. 4 and fresh Wimbledon winner Simona Halep was welcomed at the Official Lounge of the 'Henri Coanda' International Airport by Minister of Youth and Sports Bogdan Matei, President of the Romanian Olympic and Sports Committee Mihai Covaliu, President of the Romanian Tennis Federation Ion Tiriac, Finance Minister Eugen Teodorovici, Minister of National Education Ecaterina Andronescu, friends, relatives and other officials who wanted to greet her upon her return from London.

Premier Viorica Dancila met with Halep at the end of the event.

Simona Halep presented the attendance in the Official Lounge and the group of about 50 fans who waited for her at the exit the trophy received from the tournament organizers at Wimbledon, a miniature replica of the original. Halep got out of the car and posed for photos with the fans.

She will present the Romanian public her Wimbledon trophy at an event organized by the Bucharest City Hall on the National Arena on Wednesday, July 17, starting at 19:00 hrs.

Romanian tennis player Simona Halep won her first Wimbledon title on July 13, after defeating American Serena Williams in the final 6-2, 6-2. The only other Romanian to reach the Wimbledon final was Ilie Nastase, who twice ended as runner-up, in 1972 to Stan Smith, and in 1976 to Bjorn Borg.

This is Halep's second Grand Slam title, after her French Open win in 2018. AGERPRES (RO - editor: Marius Tone; EN - author: Simona Klodnischi, editor: Simona Iacob)

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