Australian Open: Johanna Konta powers through against Caroline Wozniacki

Konta beats Wozniacki 6-3, 6-1 and will play Ekaterina Makarova in the 4th round

Johanna Konta is through to the 4th round of the Australian Open versus Ekaterina Makarova – for the 2nd year in a row – after beating the previous world No1 Caroline Wozniacki in an hour-and-a-quarter on day 6, and there are sound needs to think she can reach the last weekend of the competition.

She got to the semi-finals 12 months earlier when ranked 47 on the planet, losing to the ultimate champ, Angelique Kerber, however her instant objective is to obtain previous Ekaterina Makarova on Monday then, in all possibility, Serena Williams in the quarter-finals 2 days later on.

It is some ask, however the world No9 is playing the sort of disciplined tennis that has actually struck hesitancy into all her challengers over the previous year, here and somewhere else.

Her serve clicked once again, structure on her credibility with 6 aces and 69% of points won on 2nd serve. She is practically impregnable with ball in hand, as she was in 2015 when she led the Tour with second-serve success, the giveaway indication of a strong video game. Some of her ground strokes on Saturday were spectacular in power and accuracy.

Konta broke in the seventh video game and, while staying watchful versus a challenger she appreciates for her psychological and physical durability, she liquidated the very first set with another break. She broke and held conveniently at the start of the 2nd set, going on to win 6-3, 6-1, although double-faulting for the 3rd time on match point when over-reaching for a grandstand surface.

It was every bit as excellent as her hard win over unseeded Kirsten Flipkens and her more emphatic overpowering of the Japanese possibility Naomi Osaka .

I absolutely played a really high level, she stated courtside. Im pleased to come through that. She truly makes you work for it. I wished to assert myself from the outset, and I handled to do that.

In 3 matches in the hardest area of the draw, Konta has actually quit simply 16 video games, less than either of ins 2015 finalists, Kerber and Serena Williams.

Her development in 2016 marked the very first time a British gamer had actually reached the semi-finals because Sue Barker in 1977, yet the host broadcaster, Channel 7, demand describing her as Australian-born Konta, with routine tips throughout her matches that she invested the very first 14 years of her life in Sydney prior to her immigrant moms and dads returned to Europe to be closer to household staying in Hungary.

That is a minor nuancing of the truths, as Kontas household emigrated to the UK to more quickly install her in the Sanchez Casal Barcelona academy (where she initially satisfied Andy Murray) to deal with her tennis. Konta, who ended up being a British person 5 years earlier and calls Bournemouth house, can just smile and bear it when challenged with this serial if innocent flag-waving.

If she stopped briefly to think about a larger sporting context, she might advise her patriotic inquisitors that the Australian cricket group has 4 gamers with abroad connections, consisting of Yorkshireman Matt Renshaw, who still has a British passport, as does Peter Handscomb, who was born in Melbourne (and was a great junior tennis gamer).

All that aside, Konta did herself happy on Saturday and was warmly gotten by fans of all backgrounds on another barely overbearing however hot days. She stated of another huge match versus the Russian, We had an extremely close 4th round here in 2015. I beat her 8-6 in the 3rd. You do not have any simple matches at this phase.

Makarova, who endured a second-set fightback from 0-4 by the previous finalist and 6th seed, Dominika Cibulkova, 6-2, 6-7 (3), 6-3 on the primary court. The Russian 30 th seed required a medical time-out early in the 3rd set for exactly what seemed a hand injury and may not be at her finest on Monday. Cibulkova was not persuaded. She was constraining a bit in her hand, she stated later on. Possibly not. I have no idea.

Beyond Makarova lies a completely various difficulty: Serena Williams, fit and smiling and in the sort of type that has actually won her 22 majors.

She has type, physical fitness and is getting more powerful, the previous British No1 Sam Smith stated of Konta. Definitely she can beat Serena Williams. She is going from strength to strength.

Still, as the TELEVISION marketing concept of these champions Novak Djokovic sitting courtside humming along to Be Happy – continues to haunt our understandings of supremacy 2 days after his unscheduled departure, Williams, serenely, remains superbly in the womens draw.

She appropriately cavilled at the ill-informed recommendation on Thursday that her win over 6-3, 6-4 over Lucia Safarova was scrappy, and strengthened her point by beating her outclassed compatriot, Nicole Gibbs, for the loss of simply 4 video games in 63 minutes on Saturday.

It was such a lovely day today, she stated. I enjoy playing in the sun. The six-time champ might not remember in her summer reverie who her challenger was the very first time she had actually played on the primary court here, 19 years ago to the day: her sis Venus. Truly? she stated courtside.

She understands who she is playing next, nevertheless, and is prepared for the difficulty. She plays 16th seed Barbora Strycova, who beat among Andy Murrays preferred gamers, Caroline Garcia, 6-2, 7-5.

Whoever goes through to the quarter-finals, the dangers originating from the leading half on that side of the draw are less strong, although the 2nd week of a slam tosses up all sorts of surprises, particularly in the womens draw here at the very first significant of the season.

Among them is the 21-year-old American qualifier, Jenny Brady, who remains in her 2nd year on the Tour and confided after putting out the 14th seed Elena Vesnina, 7-6 (x), 6-2, that she had actually reserved a flight house for next Wednesday. Whatever occurs when she plays the relatively ageless Mirjana Lucic-Baroni on Monday, Bradys world ranking of 116 will be left method behind. She has likewise doubled her profession profits in a fortnight.

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