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Johanna Konta enters Nottingham Open semis, warms up for Wimbledon in style

Johanna Konta won through to her first semi-final since Wimbledon last year with a straight sets victory over Dalila Jakupovic

tennis Updated: Jun 16, 2018 09:42 IST
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP, Nottingham
Johanna Konta,Nottingham Open,Wimbledon
Johanna Konta warmed up for the Wimbledon Grand Slam in style by entering the semi-final of the Nottingham Open grass court tournament. (REUTERS)

Britain’s Johanna Konta won through to her first semi-final since Wimbledon last year with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Dalila Jakupovic in the WTA tour event in Nottingham -- a warm-up for the lone grass-court Grand Slam.

Konta next faces Donna Vekic of Croatia, who beat her in the Nottingham final 12 months ago.

Friday’s match was the first meeting between Konta and Jakupovic. It was the Slovenian who made the initial move by breaking serve to lead 2-1.

But the methodical Konta kept her composure and, against an increasingly erratic opponent, won four games in a row to take the first set.

Jakupovic had an early break in the second as well but Konta soon levelled before surging to victory.

“It was very tricky out here, quite windy, and I’d never played her before,” Konta told Eurosport.

“The most important thing is that I’m competing well and fighting for every single point. I’m definitely enjoying getting more matches under my belt and we’ll work towards getting another one.”

After their Nottingham encounter, Konta beat Vekic at Wimbledon -- but only after winning the deciding set 10-8.

“We’ve had some incredible battles, especially the last two times,” said Konta. “She’s playing very well on this surface.

“I’m looking forward to the challenge, it’ll be a great test for me to keep competing the way I have and keep raising my level.”

British number four Katie Boulter had done well to reach a first WTA quarter-final but her Nottingham run came to an end on Friday as top seed Ashleigh Barty of Australia won 6-0, 6-2.

First Published: Jun 16, 2018 09:40 IST