Johanna Konta’s impressive run continues as she books fourth-round spot

Published: Saturday 23rd January 2016 by The News Editor

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Johanna Konta has matched her best ever performance at a grand slam as the British number one dispatched Denisa Allertova to reach the Australian Open last 16.

It took Konta 14 attempts to go past the fourth round at a major tournament but after her success at last year’s US Open, she has now managed it twice in a row after easing past Allertova 6-2 6-2.

The world number 47, who is set to climb into the top 40, will now play Russia’s 21st seed Ekaterina Makarova for a place in the quarter-finals.

Makarova feels at home in Melbourne, having reached the semi-finals here 12 months ago and the quarter-finals in both 2012 and 2013, but Konta beat her in Eastbourne last year and will fancy another upset.

Allertova was certainly no match for her resurgent opponent in Hisense Arena and the fact this dominant victory came just eight months after Konta lost the pair’s last meeting at the French Open, is a mark of how far the Briton has risen.

Her opponent has also been in good form but Allertova was wearing heavy strapping around her left thigh and, whether fully fit or not, never really gained a foothold in the contest.

Konta was too strong at the back, where her rasping forehand dictated the exchanges, and ruthless on serve, serving five aces and not offering a single break point during the entire match.

She broke Allertova in the very first game and then again in the seventh, before clinching the first set with an ace in 29 minutes.

The second set followed the same pattern as Konta raced ahead 2-0 and, unlike in her opening two rounds, there was no late wobble as she sealed victory with a forehand pass in just over an hour.

“It was not easy out here today, she’s an incredibly tough opponent,” Konta said.

“I had a tough match against her at the French Open so I knew I had to run every ball down and fight for every point. It definitely wasn’t easy.”

After the match, Allertova admitted she had been hampered by injury but the world number 66 was generous in her praise of Konta.

“I hurt my left leg in the opening round, it got worse in the second and today it was just not me on the court. It was hard to play every point the way I wanted,” Allertova said.

“I am tired and sad, because without this injury I thought I had a chance. Jo was ruthless with me.

“She played well on every point, she has got much better since we met at the French Open, she is going up and up and is such a good player.”

Published: Saturday 23rd January 2016 by The News Editor

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