Konta surges into quarter-finals with compelling display
08 July 2019 / 19:09
Comeback queen Johanna Konta is into the quarter-finals at Wimbledon and fired up for the challenge of Barbora Strycova in the next round.
Konta repeated her gutsy come-from-behind performance against ninth seed Sloane Stephens by beating sixth seed Petra Kvitova 4-6 6-2 6-4 in round four.
Big-hitting two-time Wimbledon champion Kvitova edged the first set but Konta confidently upped the ante in the next two, and looks in fine form ahead of her Tuesday quarter-final against Strycova.
“It will be tough, Barbora is a very crafty player and knows how to mix up the game,” Konta said after her compelling win.
“I haven't played her in a little while and I think the only time I played her was in Tokyo a few years ago.
“She knows how to play on this surface and like me, she's won four matches to get here.
“I’m just looking forward to playing another great player and it’s really nice to be in the quarter-finals of a Slam again.”
The match itself was a thumping Centre Court battle between two players with a heavyweight game.
Konta, 5’11, and Kvitova, 6’0”, had met four times previously with Czech player Kvitova having the power-game edge at three matches to one.
But the British number one looks steelier than ever and after reaching the final four at Roland Garros is competing in the second week of successive Slams for the first time, throwing that momentum into the battle with Kvitova.
The power from both players was there for all to see in the first set and Kvitova edged it, but Konta is a fighter and so she fought, breaking at the start of the second set and then holding in a crucial 12-minute second game.
Konta’s quality only rose in the third set and her second comeback win on the trot fuels confidence for the clash with Strycova, who beat Elise Mertens 4-6 7-5 6-2.
The British player continued: “I actually thought I did quite well in that first set to stay with her and then it went down to a couple points when I lost the set.
“I felt I kept my performance going, tried to stay there with her and then I definitely felt like I gained a bit more momentum and I went with that.
“I'm really pleased with the level I'm playing, how I'm competing, how I'm really just trying to find a way to win in each match that I play.
“Overall I'm enjoying this tournament for what it is and I feel like I'm still building on each match that I'm playing.”