Seven times Grand Slam champion, Venus Williams crashed out of the Australian Open after suffering a beating at the hands of British number one Johanna Konta. Konta, ranked 47th in the WTA, knocked out the 10th ranked Williams after achieving victory in a superb first round match that ended in a 6 – 4, 6 – 2 surprise for the Brit.
Since reaching the fourth round is in last year’s U.S. Open Johanna Konta bolstered her mounting reputation after needing just 79 minutes and dropping only six games to thrash Venus at Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena. She built her victory on a combination of devastatingly effective groundstrokes and an remarkable defence. This latest victory in what is one of the first and most exciting of the Grand Slam tournaments solidified her placement as Britain’s number one ranked female tennis player.
After dealing with an off-form Williams, it still leaves her with an impressive victory that got her through a demanding opening draw match that saw her face off against her idol, in her next round she is meeting with either Saisai Zheng, or Carina Witthoeft, both players currently amongst the unseeded. This leaves Konta in the highly desirable position of a probable victory in the second round with excellent chances to at the very least make it into the competition’s third round.
Despite Sydney being Johanna’s birthplace, this was her first appearance at Australia’s premier Melbourne Park tournament and she certainly did not look out of the debt at any time, she immediately took charge of the match and got under Williams’ skin in the early minutes of the match. She instantly started absorbing the much higher ranked US player’s power and managed to manoeuvre her across the court with superb moves.
In a post match interview, she revealed that after the draw was revealed she saw who she was playing and simply thought that she had to survive out on the court for more than just an hour.
It was apparent that she enjoyed 35-year-old’s serve managed to create her first break successfully during the third game taking a 2 – 1 early lead, only to find further benefit in a flurry of unforced errors from Williams that resulted in her getting a second break to extend her lead to 5 – 2.
She won the second set in what was apparently a walkover during which the Brit national produced truly scintillating tennis plays.