The British No.1 and World No.7 Johanna Konta missed out on two match points before succumbing to the in-form Russian Ekaterina Makarova in the second round of the Rogers Cup in Toronto. This loss was the first defeat that Konta had suffered against Makarova in five matches.
The Briton found herself a break down in the opening set, but recovered before taking the first set 7-5. Every player searches for that perfect match and that perfect performance, but Konta knew that was going to be hard to deliver on her first match back after a long break between tournaments, as this was her first competitive singles match since Wimbledon.
After going down an early break in the third game of the second set, Konta responded efficiently once again and found a way to put herself in a position to serve for the match. The Brit held two match points over two games at *5-3 and 5-4* in the second set, but could not drag herself over the line.
The Russian clinched the set with a sweetly-timed volley at the net, sending the match into a decider. The question was whether Konta could really seal her fifth consecutive victory with not much tennis under her belt.
The one single service break was enough for the Russian No.5 to take the win in a tough three-sets win that lasted nearly two-and-a-half hours.
What does this early exit and loss really mean for Konta? No losses in the early stages of a big tournament like the Rogers Cup is an ideal loss, but Wim Fissette and Andrew Fitzpatrick will be focusing on the fact that Konta experienced this loss at the beginning of her US Open preparation and not during the fourth and final Grand Slam of the year. The key is to pick up the level of your tennis and performance when it counts and Konta will look to elevate her game to the required standards in order to be a true contender for the US Open at the end of the month. Konta’s game translates well to the hardcourt, so her expectations in the coming weeks will continue to be extremely high.
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