WTA Wimbledon: Johanna Konta, Barbora Strycova and Alison Riske advance


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WTA Wimbledon: Johanna Konta, Barbora Strycova and Alison Riske advance

The 19th seed and 2017 Wimbledon semi-finalist Johanna Konta is through to the fourth round at home Major for the second time, ousting the 9th seed Sloane Stephens 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 in two hours and two minutes. Konta played better on both the first and second serve, prevailing in the second set and marching towards the finish line with an incredible performance in the decider that left Stephens far behind.

The American had 29 winners and 19 unforced errors but her best tennis came in sets first and two, unable to seal the deal in straight sets before fading from the court in the third against the opponent that fended off four out of five break points.

The first set was fast and fluid, with Stephens who held without break points in the entire set, taking it with a break in game eight for a 6-3. Facing elimination, Konta saved all four break points in the first half of the second set to stay on the positive side of the scoreboard, breaking Sloane at 5-4 to set up a decider where she dominated from start to finish, earning breaks in games two and six and moving over the top with a hold at 15 at 5-1 to go through.

The Czech Barbora Strycova toppled the 4th seed Kiki Bertens 7-5, 6-1 in an hour and 36 minutes, advancing into the fourth round for the second time in the 16th straight Wimbledon appearance. Taming her shots nicely, Strycova fired 22 winners and 16 unforced errors, repelling seven out of eight break chances to mount the pressure on the other side, seizing four break points from 15 opportunities to wrap up the triumph in straight sets.

Bertens had 21 winners but almost 30 mistakes as well, unable to impose her shots and overpower the rival in the rallies. They traded breaks in the third and fourth games of the first set and Bertens had a great chance to move in front at 4-4, squandering six break points and having to save two set points on own serve in the tenth game.

Finally, Stricova converted the fifth set point overall at 6-5, gaining the lead and a massive advantage ahead of set number two where she broke Kiki twice to secure the victory and reach the second week. Alison Riske will play in the fourth round for the first time at the age of 29, ousting the 13th seed Belinda Bencic 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 in two hours and nine minutes.

It was a mighty close encounter from start to finish, with 34 winners and 37 unforced errors for Bencic and a 28-29 ratio for Riske who saved six out of nine break points to limit the damage in her games. On the other hand, she delivered four breaks in total, rattling off the last three games in set number two and overcoming a 3-0 deficit in the decider to take six out of the final seven games for her best Wimbledon run in a career.