Tennis: Johanna Konta beats Naomi Osaka to reach second round of Porsche Grand Prix

Samuel Lovett
Johanna Konta beats Naomi Osaka to reach second round of Porsche Grand Prix

World No 7 Johanna Konta has reached the second round of the Porsche Grand Prix in Stuttgart, beating Japan’s Naomi Osaka 7-6 (7-5) 3-6 6-1, to put a difficult weekend behind her.

The 25-year-old travelled to Germany from Constanta, where she was reduced to tears after being subject to verbal abuse from Ilie Nastase during Great Britain's fiery Fed Cup play-off against Romania.

Konta initially struggled for consistency against her Japanese opponent on Wednesday afternoon, with the first set being taken to a decider before Osaka clinched the second set.

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Konta had not dropped a set in two previous meetings with 19-year-old Osaka but clay has proven to be her weakest surface.

Konta's breakthrough came when she saved two break points in the third game of the third set before going on to break her opponent’s serve in the next game.

The Australian-born Briton did not look back from there as the Japanese-American became increasingly hindered by an abdominal injury.

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Konta will face Latvia's Anastasija Sevastova in the second round.

The 25-year-old said on BT Sport: "I think obviously you could tell she was struggling, I hope everything is okay with her and she recovers quickly.

"It was just important for me to stay on my own game. Even though I lost the second set I didn't feel like I did much wrong."

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