Romanian tennis player Simona Halep, currently world number one, has won the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Fan Favourite Award 2018.
"For the second straight season, Simona Halep added another incredible honor to her year-end spot at the top of the WTA Rankings: the title of WTA Fan Favorite," WTA reports on its website.
Only four women have been named Fan Favorite in the ten-year history of the award. Russians Maria Sharapova and Elena Dementieva each claimed the prize once before recently-retired Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland reeled off six straight crowns from 2011 to 2016.
"Halep reached a third career major final at the Australian Open before winning her maiden Grand Slam title at Roland Garros. The Romanian also picked up trophies at the Rogers Cup and the Shenzhen Open, ending the season at World No.1 for the second straight year despite suffering a back injury as 2018 came to a close."
The WTA staff also recall that Halep went on to win her first major title over Sloane Stephens in three sets; proving that she made many people happy, her triumph was celebrated by 15,000 fans at the Bucharest National Stadium in Romania.
Halep won the fan-based poll to determine the 2018 WTA Fan Favorite, defending her title from last year as the top vote-getter, running, among others, against Danish Caroline Wozniacki, the 2018 Australian Open champion, German Angelique Kerber, the 2018 Wimbledon champion, and Japanese Naomi Osaka, the 2018 US Open champion.