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Former world No 1 Simona Halep has appointed Thierry Van Cleemput as her new coach and will officially begin working with the Belgian at next week’s Qatar Open.

According to the WTA Tour website, Halep had planned to fly solo for the first few months of 2019 after former coach Darren Cahill left to spend more time with his family in Australia.

French Open champion Halep began speaking with Van Cleemput at last month’s Australian Open after he split with world No 21 David Goffin midway through the tournament, according to a report on the WTA website.

World No 3 Halep, whose pre-season was shortened due to a back issue, made the fourth round at Melbourne Park where she lost to American Serena Williams in three sets.

Halep is currently headed to Ostrava, Czech Republic to represent Romania in their Fed Cup tie against the defending champions this coming weekend.

From there, she is entered in both Doha and the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

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