British No.1 Konta reached the Nature Valley Open semi-finals after easing past Slovenia’s Dalila Jakupovic, 6-4, 6-2 in 77 minutes. The 2017 Wimbledon semi-finalist said: “It was a tough match. When you play an opponent you haven’t played before, there are some things that are unpredictable. I definitely felt some of those challenges today and the conditions were also still a bit tricky. It’s not easy playing out there [in the wind] but it’s the same for everyone. Overall I’m happy with the way I kept fighting.”
The result sets up a rematch of last year’s final in Nottingham against defending champion Donna Vekic. The 2017 three-set thriller went in Vekic’s favour, but Konta avenged the defeat at Wimbledon just a few weeks later.
“We had two great battles last year and I know she plays very well on this surface,” Konta said. “It will be a really tough challenge for me, but it’s a great opportunity for me to keep fighting and raising my level with each match that I play.”
Earlier in the day, Katie Boulter’s brilliant run, which saw her reach her maiden WTA singles quarter-final, was brought to an end as she fell 6-0, 6-2 to an in-form Ashleigh Barty. The Australian top seed will go on to play Naomi Osaka in the opening WTA semi-final clash on Saturday.
A Gutsy performance from both sides