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Konta pulls out of Sydney event for second time


Johanna Konta
Johanna Konta

By Peter Jordan

British No.1 Johanna Konta withdrew from the Sydney International for the second time in two days.

The 27-year-old was due to play Kiki Bertens as a lucky loser in the first round yesterday, having retired from her second-round qualifying match with a neck injury on Sunday.

No reason has been given for the latest withdrawal, which comes a week before the Australian Open.

Meanwhile, Heather Watson lost in the Hobart International first round. The British No.2 was beaten 6-1 6-4 by Romania's Irina-Camelia Begu.

The tournaments in Sydney and Hobart are the final WTA events before the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam of the year, begins on January 14.

Britain's Cameron Norrie reached the second round of the ASB Classic in Auckland with a straight-sets victory over Frenchman Benoit Paire.

The 23-year-old raced to a 6-3 6-2 win and will now face Portugal's Joao Sousa.

"I fought off some break points and then managed to play a good game to break," he said. "I managed to out-tough him in the second and freed up my forehand to be aggressive."

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