It was all eyes on Johanna Konta’s knee – the latest injury this time to her left knee which forced her to hand a walkover to Coco Gauff in Montreal. It was a great start for the Brit as she stormed through the first set, against Karolina Muchova.
However, there was always a feeling that she needed to get this done in straight sets, so when the rain stopped the match at 3-3 in the second set, it was the break that Muchova needed to regroup. The restart saw the Czech moving a lot better and taking a lot more control in the match, as she edged Konta in a tight tie-break.
Konta was beginning to look a little weary and it is worth remembering that she struggled with Covid symptoms that stopped her from competing at the Tokyo Olympics.
Muchova very much had the bit between her teeth, and Konta started to look laboured, as the Czech closed out the match.
It has been a pleasing upturn in Heather Watson’s fortunes this week. After coming through tough qualifying matches, she went the distance once more in a battle of the qualifiers, looking particularly strong in the decider, and was up against World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty.
It was always going to be a tough ask.
Watson fought back from 0-3 down in the first set before being broken one more time but the Australian.
Despite two chances to break the Brit, Barty started to find herself under more pressure as Watson hung tough to force a tiebreak. However, Barty’s tie-break record is most impressive this season, as she jumped out to a 6-1 lead leaving Watson with too much of a mountain to climb.
Konta is scheduled to play in Cleveland next week with Watson on the list for Chicago.
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