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Published: 18:28 | 19/1/16

Konta thrilled with beating Venus

British number one progresses

Johanna Konta stunned Venus Williams in the opening round of the Australian Open in Melbourne.

Eighth seed Williams, the 2003 winner of the tournament, was expected to come through the tie against the unseeded British number one.

However, Konta produced an array of the fine groundstrokes and defended admirably in marching to an emphatic 6-4 6-2 triumph over the 35-year-old.

"I have all the respect for Venus in the world," said the Sydney-born Briton. "I was just really enjoying my time out there.

"I think it would be silly to look at Venus' age and somehow consider that as a reflection of her level. I think it's irrelevant how old she is because she's such a champion with so much experience and so much knowledge about the game.

"Even if she's playing with one leg out there, you've got to really take care of things on your own because she's an incredible player.

"When the draw came out and I saw who I was playing, I just thought that I hoped to stay out there more than an hour.

"Right now, it is still very much a blur.

"I played two previous tournaments and I didn't quite get the results I wanted but I have a very strong belief in the way I want to play out there and the way I want to be thinking, so I keep trying every day.

"Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, and today I won."

After winning the first set, Konta raced into a 5-0 lead in the second, before overcoming a little uncertainly and tension to seal the victory.

"Obviously there are nerves, and also the nerves of the many thousand people around you, which is impossible not to feel either," Konta said.

"So, I was just really focusing on my breathing and just trying to stay very present because it's never over until you're shaking hands."

Konta, who meet Zheng Saisai in the second round, is the only remaining Briton in the women's draw, following Heather Watson's 6-7 (4-7) 7-5 7-5 loss to Hungary's Timea Babos on Monday.

Australian Open, Women's Singles, Round 1 results
A Beck (GER) bt P Hon (AUS) 6-0, 6-3
M Keys (USA) (15) bt Z Diyas (KAZ)7-6, 6-1
L Siegemund (GER) bt K Bertens (NED) 6-4, 7-5
E Makarova (RUS) (21) bt M Inglis (AUS) 6-3, 6-0
T Bacsinszky (SUI) (11) bt K Siniakova (CZE) 6-3, 7-5
K Flipkens (BEL) bt M Lucic-Baroni (CRO) 5-7, 6-2, 7-5
G Muguruza Blanco (ESP) (3) bt A Kontaveit (EST) 6-0, 6-4
V King (USA) bt M Barthel (GER) 3-6, 7-5, 6-4
J Jankovic (SRB) (19) bt P Hercog (SLO) 6-3, 6-3
N Osaka (JPN) bt D Vekic (CRO) 6-3, 6-2
J Goerges (GER) bt A Mitu (ROU) 6-3, 6-4
B Strycova (CZE) bt C Garcia (FRA) (32) 6-2, 6-4
E Svitolina (UKR) (18) bt V Duval (USA) 6-2, 6-3
J Konta (GBR) bt V Williams (USA) (8) 6-4, 6-2
Y Shvedova (KAZ) bt T Pironkova (BUL) 6-4, 6-4
T Maria (GER) bt O Govortsova (BLR) 6-4, 6-3
K Pliskova (CZE) (9) bt K Birrell (AUS) 6-4, 6-4
S Zheng (CHN) bt C Witthoeft (GER) 6-1, 6-2
A Ivanovic (SRB) (20) bt T Patterson (AUS) 6-2, 6-3
M Brengle (USA) bt C Vandeweghe (USA) 6-3, 6-4
A Sevastova (LAT) bt J Gajdosova (AUS) 6-0, 4-2 retired
V Lepchenko (USA) bt L Tsurenko (UKR) (31) 6-7, 6-2, 6-3
S Lisicki (GER) (30) bt P Cetkovska (CZE) 6-4, 6-4
J Larsson (SWE) bt I Begu (ROU) (29) 6-3, 6-2
A Kerber (GER) (7) bt M Doi (JPN) 6-7, 7-6, 6-3
A Cornet (FRA) bt B Jovanovski (SRB) 6-1, 6-0
S Zhang (CHN) bt S Halep (ROU) (2) 6-4, 6-3
D Allertova (CZE) bt B Mattek-Sands (USA) 6-4, 6-7, 6-3
D Kovinic (MNE) bt S Crawford (USA) 6-2, 6-4
A Dulgheru (ROU) bt S Sanders (AUS) 6-4, 6-2
L Arruabarrena-Vecino (SPA) bt M Zanevska (UKR) 6-7, 6-3, 6-3


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