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Summary

  1. Third seed Halep beats second seed Pliskova 6-4 3-6 6-3
  2. Ostapenko beat Bacsinszky 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 6-3 in first semi-final
  3. Ostapenko becomes first unseeded player to reach French Open final since 1983
  4. Listen to online-only radio commentary of second semi-final

Live Reporting

By Jonathan Jurejko

All times stated are UK

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Au revoir!

Ostapenko
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Halep
EPA

Two winning waves, two beaming smiles, and two French Open finalists.

Latvia's Jelena Ostapenko was the first, becoming the first unseeded woman to reach the Roland Garros final since 1983 by beating Swiss 30th seed Timea Bacsinszky.

And then third seed Simona Halep - much more fancied to still be there on Saturday - saw off the women ranked directly above her, Karolina Pliskova, to join Ostapenko.

So make sure you join us on Saturday!

Oh, and I nearly forgot... come back tomorrow. Something about four blokes and two more matches?

Halep on track for top spot

Piers Newbery

BBC Sport at Roland Garros

The Romanians on Chatrier erupt as one when the ball floats long to give Halep victory. She spent a good part of the last two sets on the defensive, scrambling brilliantly to get Pliskova's flat, heavy groundstrokes back. Halep has carried the burden of being favourite all tournament, and there have been some sticky moments, but she remains on track to convert her talent into a major trophy and the number one ranking.

And if Halep needed another reason to win Saturday's final - other than the glory of finally becoming a Slam champion - then she has one...

Halep through to French Open final

Halep 6-4 3-6 6-3 Pliskova

Simona Halep on reaching her second French Open final: "It is an amazing feeling, I'm so happy. I came through a tough match yesterday, but I just care about today. Karolina is a good player and made it tough.

"It is nice to be in the final again, I hope I can play better and win it. I'm playing a young player, it is a big challenge and it will be great to play here on Chatrier again."

French Open
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Halep through to French Open final

Halep 6-4 3-6 6-3 Pliskova

What is also remarkable about Halep's performance today, controlling the first set before digging deep when it mattered in the decider, is that she had to come through a grueller of a semi-final.

She looked to be heading out yesterday after going a set and 5-1 down against Elina Svitolina.

But she battled back, recharged the batteries and powered through again today. Oh, and she had an ankle injury only a couple of weeks ago...

Halep
Reuters

Halep through to French Open final

Halep 6-4 3-6 6-3 Pliskova

Halep lost in three sets to Maria Sharapova in her last final appearance in Paris. This time she won't be facing a seasoned Slam winner.

Standing in the way is unseeded Latvian Jelena Ostapenko, who as I'm sure you remember, beat Timea Bacsinszky a couple of hours or so ago.

Whatever happens (and that could be anything) we do know that a new Grand Slam winner will be crowned on Saturday.

Halep
Getty Images

Game, set and match - Halep

Halep 6-4 3-6 6-3 Pliskova

Simona Halep has done it!

The Romanian third seed reaches her second Roland Garros final with a big serve down the middle that Pliskova can only bat back over the baseline.

Simona Halep
Getty Images

Halep breaks

*Halep 6-4 3-6 5-3 Pliskova

Karolina Pliskova is goosed. All the effort in that previous game takes it toll.

The Czech second seed makes a string of sloppy unforced errors - taking her tally to 44 for the match - to gift the game to Halep.

The 2014 finalist is serving for the match...

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

Pliskova did not give up in that point. She kept fighting and we are back on serve.

Pliskova
Getty Images

Pliskova breaks back

Halep 6-4 3-6 4-3 Pliskova*

Anyone got any plans tonight? Delay them. This one could go on for a while longer yet. I need to get to the polling booth before 10pm...

Pliskova continues to pile on the pressure, hammering down meaty forehands which Halep can't cope with.

Another winner gives her a double break point, and she takes it.

Back on serve...

*Halep 6-4 3-6 4-2 Pliskova

An unforced error followed by two forehand winners see Pliskova home. That tells you everything about how the Czech's energy levels are. She's trying to blitz everything in an attempt to keep the points short.

Pliskova
Reuters

Halep 6-4 3-6 4-1 Pliskova*

Relentless. The Romanian road-runner earns a point for a double break... this goes and the match as good as goes...

Pliskova smashes an ace down the middle. That's how you save a break point.

A backhand winner from the Czech, who has hit the ball beautifully today, puts within touching distance of the hold.

But then she buckles with a double fault. On we go...

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

Halep hits so beautifully cross court. She has that ball on a string.

Halep
Getty Images

Halep 6-4 3-6 4-1 Pliskova*

Has Pliskova got anything left in the tank then? Or is she chugging to a halt?

Pliskova
Getty Images

Halep 6-4 3-6 4-1 Pliskova*

Career longevity is not something you get as a string working for Karolina Pliskova. The hard-hitting Czech goes through racquets quicker than i go through cups of tea. And, believe me, that is plenty.

Another quick change from the second seed after she batters a forehand winner into submission, racking two break points...

But an unforced error sees one fall by the wayside, and that gives Halep the foothold she needs.

The Romanian wipes out the second, goes ahead with a backhand winner and then clinches the hold. Big.

French Open
Reuters

*Halep 6-4 3-6 3-1 Pliskova

Crucial.

Simona Halep maintains her momentum and fends off a Pliskova fightback from 30-0 to 30-30. Pliskova then puts a return into a net and it's break point.

Halep needs to hold her nerve... and does! A brilliant sweeping forehand from the back of the court is over Pliskova and the Romanian has the break.

Simona Halep
Getty Images

Halep 6-4 3-6 2-1 Pliskova*

A confident game by Halep.

She's relentlessly chasing down shots and is giving Pliskova as good as she can get.

Halep breezes through the third game and leads 2-1 in the decisive set.

Simona Halep
Getty Images

*Halep 6-4 3-6 1-1 Pliskova

Is the wind starting to increase on Chatrier? Karolina Pliskova aborts her serve a couple of times during this game.

Halep threatens to nab her serve as they go to deuce, but the Czech recovers with an ace to keep her at arm's length.

Karolina Pliskova
Getty Images

Halep 6-4 3-6 1-0 Pliskova*

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

There is so little between these players so far. I think I would have to favour Halep if only slight in this match, simply because of her confidence and court movement, but it is only slightly. A very difficult pick to make.

Halep 6-4 3-6 1-0 Pliskova*

Simona Halep gets back on track with a relatively-easy hold, despite Karolina Pliskova knocking a wonderful inside-out forehand down the line for 40-15.

That's as good as it gets for the Czech, a long forehand clinching the hold for Halep.

She skips off court for glug of water at the changeover.

Simona Halep
Getty Images

Crowd helping Halep

Piers Newbery

BBC Sport at Roland Garros

A man with a bright yellow Romania football shirt, 'Hagi, 10' emblazoned across the back, does his best to lift his compatriot's spirits. "Si-mo-naaaaa!" he screams, to the delight of the couple sitting in front of him. For one of the biggest matches of the year, with the number one ranking and a Grand Slam title up for grabs over the next two days, the atmosphere has been a bit flat. Only now are the crowd getting involved, and it's Romanian fans who are shouting loudest.

*Halep 6-4 3-6 0-0 Pliskova

Karolina Pliskova cracked 13 winners in that second set, compared to just two from Simona Halep.

The same again will see her reach a first Roland Garros final...

Karolina Pliskova
Getty Images

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

That was the perfect way to close out a set. Pliskova served a really smart game, moved it well around the box. I have been impressed with the way she has moved forward and taken balls out of the air. That has elevated her game.

Game and second set - Pliskova

Halep 6-4 3-6 Pliskova

Pliskova may have missed the chance to take the second set in that previous game, but she doesn't this time.

The Czech has cut down on the unforced errors, finding a couple of forehand winners to take this match into a decider.

Karolina Pliskova
Getty Images

Halep 6-4 3-5 Pliskova*

Wow, this is ball-striking that anyone would be proud of. Pliskova wallops a forehand from the baseline that fizzes cross-court and out of Halep's reach.

A set point... saved.

The Romanian needs to keep this set going as long as possible - you fancy Pliskova to tire quicker - and that is what she does as she battles back to hold.

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

That was a massive service hold for Pliskova. It was such an important game, trying to consolidate. To come back from 0-30 will take a bit of steam out of Halep. A massive game for multiple reasons.

*Halep 6-4 2-5 Pliskova

"Hold serve, Karolina, hold serve." That's what Pliskova will be saying to herself.

But she gets the jitters, more unforced errors helping gift two break-back points to Halep.

The Czech second seed digs deep again, saving those, then saving another couple in deuce.

Over to you then Miss Halep. Can you hack the pressure? The Romanian serving to stay in the set...

Pliskova
Getty Images

Pliskova breaks

Halep 6-4 2-4 Pliskova*

Right then! Pliskova wakes up on Halep's serve, taking more risks and moving forward more. It pays dividends.

The Czech lands three break points when she sees a forehand winner disappear past the baseline.

She loses the first as Halep battles back, but the Romanian can't control the next rally and sends a backhand wide.

Simona Halep
Getty Images

*Halep 6-4 2-3 Pliskova

Pliskova is starting to find rhythm on her serve, the problem is she can't knock Halep's out of tune.

After Halep levels up at 2-2, Pliskova crashes down an ace - her fifth of the match - to kick off the fifth game.

Pliskova sticks her foot on the gas, upping the speed and not allowing Halep a sniff.

*Halep 6-4 1-2 Pliskova

Good recovery from Karolina Pliskova. A double fault from the Czech hauls Halep level at 30-30, but Pliskova digs deep to avoid another wobble.

A cracker of an ace wide - which whizzes past Halep's eyeline quicker than a peregrine falcon - clinches the hold.

Karolina Pliskova
Getty Images

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

The decision-making within these points are so critical. Pliskova was in a neutral position in that point and Halep was able to take the game.

Halep 6-4 1-1 Pliskova*

For the first time in, well, a while, the Halep serve faces an examination. Pliskova creams a forehand to level at 30-30, but then proves to be her own worst enemy.. another unforced error.

That poor backhand is followed by a look to the heavens. She knows. Halep goes on to hold.

Simona Halep
Getty Images

*Halep 6-4 0-1 Pliskova

Pliskova gets the second set up and running - and she is instantly back under the cosh.

A 40-15 lead quickly become deuce, Halep reading the Czech's serves beautifully, before Pliskova manages to ride the storm and bash down a forehand winner to hold

The stats clearly show where Pliskova's problems lie: she has won 48% of first serve points and has made a whopping 26 unforced errors.

Basically Halep is a returning machine and Pliskova is getting anxious.

Pliskova
Getty Images

Halep 6-4 Pliskova

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

Halep has got right back to business, throwing in first serves and she got the reward.

Halep
EPA

Game and first set - Halep

Halep 6-4 Pliskova

No surprise, really. Simona Halep has been in command of this opening set since winning that early break, and clinches the first set with a minimum of fuss.

The Romanian quickly earns two set points thanks to more unforced errors off Pliskova's racquet.

Two becomes one, as the Spice Girls once said, Pliskova leaning into a serve to drill in a cross-court backhand winner.

But another unforced error - a forehand going long - sees Halep home.

Chanda Rubin

American former world number six on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

It is interesting to see the contrast of styles - Pliskova is a big hitter and Halep a great mover.

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Ricology: Pliskova needs to find her rhythm & the heavy forehand winners will follow. Very strong from the byline

*Halep 5-4 Pliskova

Pliskova saves her skin again. She's hanging on. Halep has another set point, but the Czech second seed has her on the run, planting another forehand winner to safety.

Pliskova grows in confidence, hitting deep to test Halep's defensive powers, and the Romanian can't cleanly return two forehands.

However, she is still going to serve out for the match...

Pliskova
Reuters

Halep 5-3 Pliskova*

Halep sees a set point disappear as quickly as it arrives, Pliskova staying toe-to-toe in a baseline rally before stepping in to put away a forehand winner.

Deuce...

Pliskova
Getty Images

Halep 5-3 Pliskova*

Halep's serve look solid as she moves within a game of the opening set. The 2014 finalist races 40-0 ahead, Pliskova offers some resistance with a winning forehand volley, but Halep batters a forehand winner down the line. Can she wrap this up by breaking Pliskova's serve?

Halep
Reuters