French Open: Britain’s Johanna Konta says everyone in women’s game is beatable

Johanna Konta

Johanna Konta has reached the French Open quarter-finals for the first time

British number one Johanna Konta says there has been a belief in the women’s game that anybody is beatable for “quite some time now”.

Konta plays last year’s runner-up and seventh seed Sloane Stephens in the quarter-finals of the French Open, where many top women have fallen early.

Konta swept aside Croatian 23rd seed Donna Vekic in the last 16 on Sunday.

“It’s nice for people to also enjoy matches where nothing’s a given and it can be unpredictable,” said Konta.

“That’s the beauty of sport, to have battles where you’re not sure what the end result is going to be until it happens.”

Asked if there was a feeling everyone was beatable, she replied: “I think that’s been the growing mood for quite some time now.”

Seven of the top 10 seeds have already gone out in Paris, including world number one Naomi Osaka, 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams and second seed Karolina Pliskova.

As a result the women’s draw has been thrown wide open and two of the other players who booked quarter-final spots on Sunday will be appearing in the last eight of a Grand Slam for the first time.

Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova and Croatian 31st seed Petra Martic are debutants at this stage, while 26th seed Konta had never won a main-draw match at Roland Garros until this week.

Now she is trying to become the first British woman to reach the semi-finals here since Jo Durie in 1983, with 2017 US Open champion Stephens standing in her way.

Against Vekic she continued the impressive clay-court form that has taken her to two WTA finals on the surface in recent weeks, producing 33 winners and seven aces in an accomplished performance.

“It was a good match. I thought I had very, very few drops in my level, which I think definitely kept the pressure on her,” she said.

“I was definitely pleased with how I was playing and the kind of problem-solving I was doing out there. I felt I was being very effective.”

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