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Published: 16:20 | 27/1/16

Konta eases past Zhang

British number one to face Kerber

Johanna Konta said that she is in dreamland after defeating Shuai Zhang to reach the semi-finals of the Australian Open.

Konta, ranked 47th in the world, produced an astounding run to progress to the meeting with Zhang, and found herself as favourite to win the last-eight clash with the Chinese qualifier.

The British number one proved that the tag was accurate, playing with far more decisiveness and confidence than Zhang, aside from a spell towards the end of the opening set.

Konta secured a 6-4 6-1 win to become the first British woman to reach a Grand Slam semi-final since Jo Durie managed the feat at the 1983 US Open.

"I'm just so happy that I'm enjoying what I'm doing," said Sydney-born Konta. "That is me living my dream.

"When I was a little girl, I dreamt of winning Grand Slams and being number one in the world, and that dream stays the same."

Konta relished the big-match atmosphere in Melbourne.

"I'm happy that I was able to fight on every single point," she added. "I really enjoyed it - I really enjoyed playing in front of the big crowd.

"She didn't make it easy. I didn't put anything on this match. I just wanted to come out and play the best level that I could, and give the best entertainment that I could."

Konta goes on to face German seventh seed Angelique Kerber, who defeated Victoria Azarenka, in the last four, with Serena Williams and Agnieszka Radwanska set to do battle in the other semi-final.

Australian Open - Women's Singles quarter-finals
A Radwanska (POL) (4) bt C Suarez-Navarro (SPA) (10) 6-1, 6-3
S Williams (USA) (1) bt M Sharapova (RUS) (5) 6-4, 6-1
A Kerber (GER) (7) bt V Azarenka (BLR) (14) 6-3, 7-5
J Konta (GBR) bt S Zhang (CHN) 6-4, 6-1

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