Johanna Konta dreams of Wimbledon after Miami Open triumph

Johanna Konta enjoys her moment at the Cape Florida lighthouse after winning the Miami Open. Picture: AP.

Johanna Konta enjoys her moment at the Cape Florida lighthouse after winning the Miami Open. Picture: AP.

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Johanna Konta has shrugged off comparisons with Virginia
Wade in the wake of her 
victory at the Miami Open on 
Saturday.

The British No 1 beat former world No 1 Caroline 
Wozniacki 6-4, 6-3 to move to a career-high seventh in the world rankings.

In becoming the first British woman to win a WTA premier mandatory event, her success inevitably drew comparison with Wade, who won the Wimbledon title in 1977.

Konta said: “It does sound quite monumental but winning Wimbledon is a dream and hopefully one day I will get an opportunity to play for such a title.

“But right now I’m happy with the work I was able to put in. It’s a nice bit of history
for back home and another great opportunity to promote tennis outside the grass-court months.”

Konta’s consistency has captured the eye this season as she has emerged the strongest contender to claim a women’s grand slam title for Britain since former world No 5 Jo Durie in the early 1980s.

But she not only has to improve a dismal record at Wimbledon – where she has won one match in five attempts – but also combat what she believes is the increasing strength in depth in the women’s game.

Konta added: “I think there’s a very strong field in general, not just the top ten or the top five. That is a great testament to our sport and it has shown in the quality of matches from the first round.

“I think I’m learning to trust more in my mental and physical ability to keep coming back day after day. It’s that resilience and fitness that I’m able to keep bringing to the court.

“For me, my focus is on the daily work and that’s where I keep my mind. So long as I keep body and mind healthy, I give myself the best chance to compete as much as I want to and get the opportunity to play for more titles at this 
level.”

Roger Federer denied Rafael Nadal a first Miami Open title as he powered his way to a straight-sets victory in last night’s men’s final.

The 35-year-old Swiss made light of the baking Florida sun to underline his 2017 resurgence with a 6-3, 6-4 triumph and a repeat of his successes over the Spaniard in the Australian Open final and at Indian Wells.

Fourth seed Federer survived a series of early scares in a tight first set, and he eventually made his move in the eighth game to convert a break point at the third attempt and give himself a chance to serve for it.

Having opened the door, he powered his way through it with a confident service game to take the set 6-3.

Nadal, who was disturbed by a drone flying above the court as he prepared to serve early in the second set, had to defend two break points at 3-3 with Federer’s backhand in full flow, but he could not resist at the next time of 
asking.

A net cord which left the Spaniard in a hopeless position at 30-all handed his opponent another chance to break, and he forced an error to take a 5-4 lead and the opportunity to serve for the title.

Nadal was given hope when Federer opened with a double fault, but he restored parity with a glorious backhand pass and served out to secure victory.

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