Konta reaches US Open quarter-finals after beating third seed Pliskova
Johanna Konta enjoyed one of the biggest wins of her career by beating third seed Karolina Pliskova to reach the quarter-finals at the US Open.
The British number one dropped the first set on a tie-break but battled back to win 6-7 (1), 6-3, 7-5.
In doing so Konta became the first British woman to reach the last eight at Flushing Meadows since Jo Durie in 1983.
Konta had lost six of her previous seven matches with Pliskova, including twice on her home turf of Eastbourne, as well as in Nottingham and Birmingham.
None of those defeats will matter now with Konta continuing her fine season in the grand slams with a third successive appearance in a quarter-final.
She said: “I’m really pleased because, like my first round, every match is difficult in its own way.
“But I know that, like with everyone, there’s always going to be certain players or certain types of game styles that are just more difficult for each player to play against.
“Obviously my record shows that I find it difficult to play against Karolina. I’m just pleased I was able to basically just find a way and enjoy being out there, knowing that nothing was for certain.
“I could have lost that match just as easily as I would have won it so I’m pleased overall at how I stayed out there and played.”
It was a see-saw of a match, Konta holding two points for a double break in the first set, only to be pegged back and blown away in the tie-break.
Down a break in the second, a hold to love stopped the bleeding before three break points were engineered. Eight points in a row brought Konta level at 3-3 and another break had Pliskova suddenly feeling the heat.
At 5-3 two break points were saved, the first with a sensational forehand down the line, the second with a meaty volley, and when the Czech went long Konta levelled the match.
In a nip-and-tuck final set, Konta produced a gutsy hold to love for 5-5, and then broke to 15 to serve for the match.
One match point came and went, but when the second arrived and Pliskova’s return floated out, Konta raised her arms in celebration.
“I’ve been in this position twice before here, in the fourth round, so to go one step further is a massive achievement for me,” added Konta.
“Now I’m hoping to go two or three steps further.”