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Konta sees off Bencic to book last 16 spot despite scare

By Tom Allnutt

Johanna Konta shrugged off her second-round health scare at the US Open with a straight-sets victory over Switzerland's Belinda Bencic to move into the last 16.

Konta had suffered an on-court collapse only 48 hours earlier at Flushing Meadows but she showed no signs of weakness as she strolled past Bencic 6-2 6-1.

The British number one will now face Anastasija Sevastova, the Latvian who knocked out third seed Garbine Muguruza in round two.

"I feel overwhelmingly happy," Konta said on court afterwards.

"I felt I did a good job today playing the match at hand and I focused all my energies into this match here. I was happy how I dealt with things."

Bencic is undeniably talented and, at 19, the second youngest player ranked inside the top 30, but the Swiss simply never competed in what was a demolition on the new Grandstand court.

Konta's near-perfect performance was all the more impressive given it came two days after her traumatic bout of illness in the second round when, curtailed by heat and fatigue, she collapsed on the baseline and needed almost 15 minutes of treatment to continue.

As the second match on this time, Konta was back playing in the heat of the day but both the temperature and humidity was less fierce and she offered no signs of residual discomfort.

Instead, Konta is emerging from a tricky section of the draw as a major force and she will certainly start as favourite against Sevastova, who has climbed to 48th in the rankings following a temporary retirement in 2013.

Belfast Telegraph


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