Heather Watson defeated two players ranked over 100 places higher than her in the WTA world rankings in one day, finishing with a 6-1, 1-6, 6-4 win over Barbora Strycova to reach the semifinals at the Aegon International in Eastbourne for the second time in her career.
The British number three came through a topsy turvy quarterfinal match in two hours, recovering from a break down in the final set to see off Strycova to become the second Brit to reach the last four.
World number 23 Strycova led their head to head 3-1 and won their last meeting, which came on the grass in Birmingham last year 7-5, 6-4, but it was to be Watson’s day here by the seaside in Eastbourne.
Watson booked her place in the last eight after securing another highly credible victory over a seeded opponent. 14th seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova was her latest victim, with the British number three winning 6-4, 6-3 in one hour and 24 minutes out on Court 4. Her quarterfinal opponent, also unseeded at the Aegon International, Strycova, defeated lucky loser Lauren Davis 7-5, 6-2 to set up this early evening clash on Court 1.
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Johanna Konta secured her first win over a world number one in her career after she defeated Angelique Kerber in straight sets 6-3, 6-4 despite suffering a heavy fall in the closing stages of the match at the Aegon International in Eastbourne.
The Brit reached the semifinals in her home town tournament for the second year in a row and dominated the majority of the match against the German top seed. The fifth seed broke serve three times in the opening set and recovered from a break down in the second to close in on victory.
With Kerber serving to stay in it down 5-4 she had already saved two match points before Konta hit the deck during a rally on the third match point. The British number one hit the court with real force and banged her head in the process as she burst into floods of tears. Thankfully after a nearly 10 minute timeout she was able to calm herself down and with the support of the crowd continue the match. The Brit needed to play just two more points to close out victory in dramatic fashion.
Continue reading “WTA Eastbourne: Johanna Konta defeats Angelique Kerber to earn first win over a world number one in her career”
Novak Djokovic advanced to the semifinals at the Aegon International in Eastbourne after coming through a tough test against Donald Young 6-2, 7-6(9) as his preparations for Wimbledon continue.
The top seed looked back to his best and perfectly at home on the grass in the opening set, racing through it only dropping three points on serve to take it 6-2. The second set was a rather different story as Young grew in confidence and earned the chance to serve for the second set at 5-4. The American had a set point then and a couple more in the tiebreak, but Djokovic held his nerve and finally got over the line on his fourth match point to extend his time by the seaside in his first trip to Eastbourne.
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Novak Djokovic ensured that his first visit to Eastbourne was not a fleeting one as he booked his place in the quarterfinals at the Aegon International with a straight sets victory over Vasek Pospisil 6-4, 6-3.
In a very entertaining contest full of great shot making there was little to separate the two players in the first set. Top seed Djokovic raised his level at the crucial moment to secure a break at the end of the set to take control and fought off a break point early in the second before responding to close out the match in straight sets.
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Donna Vekic entered the Press Room with a beaming smile on her face holding the Elena Baltacha Trophy following her comeback victory over Johanna Konta in Nottingham.
This victory at the Aegon Open was the 20 year old’s second WTA title of her career and she was made to work hard for it, eventually coming through 2-6, 7-6(3), 7-5 in two hours and 29 minutes.
Describing that winning feeling and her performance, the Croat said: “It’s something I’ve been dreaming of since winning my last title and it kept me going because this feeling is amazing, there is no way to describe it. It keeps me motivated to work even harder.”
Continue reading “Donna Vekic thrilled with unexpected title at the Aegon Open Nottingham”
Donna Vekic celebrated winning her first WTA grass court title and the second of her career overall after she came back from a set down to stun top seed and British hope Johanna Konta 2-6, 7-6(3), 7-5 at the Aegon Open in Nottingham.
The 20-year-old was closer to the Brit than the scoreline suggests in the first set and managed to turn game points into conversions in the second which helped her get over the disappointment of missing out on three set points during the set to take it on a tiebreak. Vekic broke immediately in the final set but the world number eight came back midway through to make it anybody’s title to win at five games all. It was at that point which the Croat raised her level to new heights which Konta was unable to reach and as a result she sealed victory and lifted the Elena Baltacha Trophy for the first time.
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Dudi Sela captured the 22nd title of his career rallying from a set down to defeat Thomas Fabbiano in three sets 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 to win the ATP Challenger title at the Aegon Open.
After a close first set with few chances to break Fabbiano capitalised in the ninth game and served it out to move a step closer to a sixth career title. The fourth seed also had break points in the sixth game but Sela came back using all his experience to force a deciding set and swiftly established a 4-1 lead in the third. Fabbiano pulled two games back but the Israeli held his nerve and broke to love in the last game to seal the crown in Nottingham.
Continue reading “Nottingham Challenger: Dudi Sela defeats Thomas Fabbiano to capture 22nd career title at the Aegon Open”