Australian Open 2017: Konta through to the quarter-finals to face Serena Williams

Australian Open 2017: Konta through to the quarter-finals to face Serena Williams

The Brit beat Russia's Ekaterina Makarova in straight sets to reach the last eight in Melbourne.

joseph-nicholson
Joe Nicholson

Johanna Konta made it through to her second successive Australian Open quarter-final after beating Russia’s Ekaterina Makarova in straight sets.

Konta, 25, is Britain’s last representative in Melbourne, following defeats for Andy Murray and Dan Evans yesterday, yet the pressure didn’t show as she recorded a comprehensive 6-1 6-4 victory in one hour and eight minutes.

After her incredible run to the semi-final at this event 12 months ago, Konta -seeded ninth- is still yet to drop a set in this year’s competition.

She will meet 6-time champion Serena Williams in the last eight after the American defeated 16th seed Barbora Strýcová 7-5 6-4.

Konta recovered from 4-1 down in the second set before reeling off five games in a row to seal the victory.

In her on-court interview, after the win, she said: "I think I came out definitely playing at a higher level than she did but she really put herself back into that match and made it difficult for me.”

"The way she pulled away in the second set, I don't feel like I did much wrong, she started playing some incredible tennis,” she added.

Williams awaits in the last eight

When asked about facing Williams, the 22-time Grand Slam champion, Konta replied: "She's one of the few players still playing who I watched growing up. As a young girl wanting to be a professional tennis player, it's an incredible honour and I can't wait to play on court with her.”

Despite her admiration for the American, Konta won’t be holding back when the pair go head-to-head on Wednesday.

"Once out on court, against anyone, anyone is out there to compete. Hopefully I'll come off as the winner,” said the Brit.

Nine wins in a row for Konta

Konta has now won nine matches in a row after winning her second WTA title in Sydney before this event.

Against Makarova, she dominated from the off, breaking the Russian in the second game of the match before racing into a 3-0 lead.

The opening set lasted just 24 minutes, as the Konta’s aggressive game consistently took time away from her bewildered opponent.

The Brit made at stuttering start to the second set, though, allowing Makarova to take a 4-1 lead.

However, Konta battled back to win the next five games, recovering from 0-40 when she was asked to serve for the match at 5-4.

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