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The British hopeful relinquished a break point in the second game of the first set, which proved detrimental as she lost her serve in the following game.
Watson was able to break back instantly, but the momentum was short-lived as Halep grabbed two successive breaks to push on and grab a one-set lead.
It was a poor start for Watson in the second set as she lost her opening service game, which returned to deuce four times before Halep took the point.
The Brit responded with a break of her own, but Halep immediately responded to take a 2-1 lead, which allowed her to dominate the remainder of the set and win the match.