Sharapova Knocks Out Konta | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Athletics, SPORT

Sharapova Knocks Out Konta

Posted: Jun 30, 2015 at 12:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Former Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova knocked out Great Britain’s Johanna Konta in straight sets on the opening day of this year’s tournament.

Sharapova, the 2004 champion, moved into the women’s singles second round with a 6-2 6-2 win on Centre Court.

Konta, 24, has moved up to 126th in the world after beating two top-20 players at Eastbourne last week.

But fourth-seed Sharapova had too much quality and experience for the British number two on her Centre Court debut.

Australian-born Konta was given a spot on the show court after her exploits at the Aegon International were followed by the draw against the 28-year-old Russian.

Konta earned two of the finest wins of her career in Eastbourne – where she now lives – beating Russian world number eight Ekaterina Makarova and 20th-ranked Garbine Muguruza of Spain.

While she went into the match on the back of an impressive run, Sharapova was making her first appearance since losing in the French Open fourth round earlier this month.

She was not at her fluent best, producing seven double faults, while Konta set up five break points during the match.

But she only managed to take one of those opportunities before Sharapova claimed victory in one hour and 22 minutes.

“The first match of Wimbledon is never easy, especially against a crowd favourite after a great week last week,” Sharapova told BBC Sport.

“I wanted to focus on my game and I’m happy I did that.”