Tennis: 'Flight from hell' for Simona Halep

Simona Halep of Romania fields questions from the media during day 3 of the Western & Southern Open at the Lindner Family Tennis Center on Aug 14, 2017 in Mason, Ohio.
Simona Halep of Romania fields questions from the media during day 3 of the Western & Southern Open at the Lindner Family Tennis Center on Aug 14, 2017 in Mason, Ohio.PHOTO: AFP/GETTY IMAGES

Cincinnati (AFP) - World No. 2 Simona Halep had a horror show journey to reach the WTA Cincinnati Masters this week which involved a scary private plane flight and a six-hour car trip.

The 25-year-old Romanian lost in the WTA Toronto semi-finals and was convinced to take a private plane flight for the first time to travel to Cincinnati.

"When I saw the plane (for) the first time, I was scared," Halep said.

"It was too small. We had to stop in Buffalo for the (US) customs. I said that was enough.

"I was white. I felt I had no air. I said, 'That's enough for me.' That plane was moving too much. I wanted to be safe on the ground."

So Halep and coach Darren Cahill rented a car and shared a six-hour drive from Buffalo to Cincinnati.

Halep handled the steering wheel for two hours of the journey, and otherwise enjoyed the scenery.

"Mostly just the trees," she said. "The view was really good."

As for private planes, she is still willing to try them, with a caveat.

"A big plane, yes," she said. "A small one, no. Never again."