By Ros Satar
- Johanna Konta’s extraordinary run since Wimbledon came to a halt at the hands of Venus Williams 6-4 3-6 7-5
- Konta provisionally cracks the Top 50 for the first time in her career when the new rankings come out on Monday
- Misses out on Beijing qualification – We’ll be tracking Heather Watson as she tries to catch up ground
Wuhan, China – Johanna Konta sealed her British No. 1 ranking with a plucky fight to the end in the Wuhan quarter-finals, where she was pipped in a third set thriller by Venus Williams 6-4 3-6 7-5.
Konta, who came into the match with 21 wins from 22 matches since losing in the first round of Wimbledon to Maria Sharapova, looked to be struggling at the start against the former World No. 1 and seven time Grand Slam champion.
Konta was able to break Williams straight back after losing her first service game but lost her serve again for Williams to build up a 4-1 lead. The pair traded breaks again at the end of the set as Williams took a one set lead.
Konta did not give up, perhaps putting aside the fact that she was playing her idol, breaking Williams twice to level the match. The pair played tit-for-tat once more swapping breaks twice, with Konta actually sering at 5-3 for the match before Williams won four games in a row to take the match.
The pair had to contend with the Chinese crowd applauding the intense rallies mid-way through a point, that saw Williams vexed – a rare site as she rarely shows any emotion or challenges calls but with no Hawkeye at the tournament after the accidental death onsite of a young British worker, she had no choice but to accept any umpire decisions on some dubious calls.
Williams had nothing but praise for the new British No. 1, as she will face her sister Serena’s US Open conqueror Roberta Vinci in the semi-final.
Konta will rise to another career high when the rankings are confirmed on Monday, provisionally sitting at 49 next week. (Source: Live Tennis Rankings)
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