Sunday, 22 October, 2017

Johanna Konta secures place in Nottingham Open final

Johanna Konta beats Ashleigh Barty to book semi-final spot in Aegon Open Nottingham Open Day 2
Juana Turner | 18 June, 2017, 01:12

Johanna Konta moved closer to a first WTA title on home soil after booking a spot in the Aegon Open semi-final in Nottingham.

The 26-year-old Konta then fought back to win five of the next six games to close out the win.

The British number one has been in excellent form since switching from clay to the grass, and she will line up in Sunday's final having not lost a set in the East Midlands.

Russia's Natalia Vikhlyantseva upset Ana Konjuh in straight sets at the Ricoh Open in 's-Hertogenbosch to reach her first WTA final.

No.5-seeded Lucie Safarova also came through on Friday, defeating Tsvetana Pironkova, 6-3, 0-6, 6-4, to set a semifinal with Donna Vekic. "I had to raise my game and only had one little dip", she said.

Playing in the semi-finals of the competition for the first time, top seed Konta was quickly into her rhythm, breaking Rybarikova in the fifth game of the match.

Earlier on Saturday, Brits Laura Robson and Jocelyn Rae advanced to the final of the women's doubles event with a 6-3 3-6 10-6 win over compatriot Heather Watson and American Christina McHale.

After swapping breaks in the second, the Slovakian double-faulted in the 11th game to gift Konta the advantage and the Briton served out the match.

"She is a talented and effective player, especially on this surface", Konta added. "I worked very hard to get myself back into that second set and stop Ashleigh from running away with it".

The world number eight secured a 6-3 7-5 victory over the Australian to set up a last-four clash with Magdalena Rybarikova, who ousted Kristie Ahn 6-4 6-1.

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