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Tennis news - Katie Boulter falls to Aryna Sabalenka to leave Jo Konta as last Brit standing

Brave Boulter falls to Sabalenka in straight sets to leave Konta as last Brit standing

16/01/2019 at 07:15Updated 16/01/2019 at 08:58

Katie Boulter joined Dan Evans in exiting the Australian Open at the second-round stage as the British number two was beaten in straight sets by Aryna Sabalenka on Melbourne Arena.

The 22-year-old was beaten by the powerful 11th seed 6-3 6-4 and the Belarusian will now face the 17-year-old Amanda Anisimova of America in the third round.

Video - Defending champion Caroline Wozniacki comfortably through


Boulter defeated Ekaterina Makarova in her opener in Australia, and she broke her opponent in the opening game in front of a supportive Australian crowd.

Aryna Sabalenka will face Amanda Anisimova in the third round

Aryna Sabalenka will face Amanda Anisimova in the third roundGetty Images

But Sabalenka showed her renowned intensity on court to wrestle control and take the first set with a flurry of thunderous forehands.

The Brit was copeting in the second round of a Grand Slam for only the second time in her career, and she was in danger of being broken early in the second set but produced three cracking points to hold serve in the first game.

But in her next service game, Sabalenka challenged a long call on her way to the crucial breakthrough.

Boulter continued to push her opponent all the way with one sweeping backhand raising hopes of breaking back, but Sabalenka held her nerve to serve out the match.

The performance was another indication of Boulter's huge promise, but the result means that Johanna Konta is the only remaining Briton in the singles draws, with the world number 37 facing Garbine Muguruza in her second-round contest on Thursday.