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Wimbledon 2018: Johanna Konta battles to victory over Natalia Vikhlyantseva, sets up Cibulkova clash

Konta battles to victory over Vikhlyantseva, sets up Cibulkova clash

03/07/2018 at 12:32Updated 03/07/2018 at 21:46

Britain's Johanna Konta got her 2018 Wimbledon campaign off and running with a hard-fought 7-5 7-6(7) victory over Natalia Vikhlyantseva of Russia.

The 22nd seed won through in straight sets but both were very evenly contested with Vikhlyantseva proving a doughty and gutsy opponent.

Konta, who was a semi-finalist last year, picked up the crucial break of serve at 5-5 in the opening set to ease the tension on Court 2.

Vikhlyantseva, however, refused to be dictated to again in the second set despite the Brit throwing everything she could at her from the back of the court.

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The second ended up in an extended tie-break which Konta eventually won 9-7 after a number of epic rallies.

The 27-year-old was delighted with her performance in coming through in straight sets despite the resistance from her opponent.

Britain's Johanna Konta celebrates winning a game against Russia's Natalia Vikhlyantseva during their women's singles first round match on the second day of the 2018 Wimbledon Championships

Britain's Johanna Konta celebrates winning a game against Russia's Natalia Vikhlyantseva during their women's singles first round match on the second day of the 2018 Wimbledon ChampionshipsGetty Images

"It's the first round of a Slam - there were definitely some nerves there," Konta said.

"First rounds are always tricky. The conditions were tricky, breezy and gusty, it didn't make it easy.

"I am playing these Championships independent of what happened last year. I am a littler wiser this year, working hard to be here for a full two weeks."

Konta will next take on the dangerous Dominka Cibulkova in the second round at SW19.

Women's singles results

  • No. 1 Simona Halep defeats Kurumi Nara 6-2, 6-4
  • No. 3 Garbine Muguruza defeats Naomi Broady 6-2, 7-5
  • Belinda Bencic defeats No. 6 Caroline Garcia 7-6, 6-3
  • Aliaksandra Sasnovich defeats No. 8 Petra Kvitova 6-4, 4-6, 6-0
  • No. 11 Angelique Kerber defeats Vera Zvonareva 7-5, 6-3
  • No. 15 Elise Mertens defeats Danielle Collins 6-3, 6-2
  • No. 16 Naomi Osaka defeats Monica Niculescu 6-4, 6-1
  • No. 17 Ashleigh Barty defeats Stefanie Vogele 7-5, 6-3
  • No. 22 Johanna Konta defeats Natalia Vikhylantseva 7-5, 7-6
  • Vitalia Diatchenko defeats No. 24 Maria Sharapova 6-7, 7-6, 6-4
  • No. 26 Daria Gavrilova defeats Caroline Dolehide 6-2, 6-3
  • No. 28 Anett Kontaveit defeats Denisa Allertova 6-2, 6-2
  • Hsieh Su-wei defeats No. 30 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-4, 4-6, 6-3
  • Lara Arruabarrena defeats Ana Bogdan 6-1, 3-6, 8-6
  • Dominika Cibulkova defeats Alize Cornet 7-6, 6-1
  • Samantha Stosur defeats Peng Shuai 6-4, 7-5
  • Claire Lu defeats Ana Konjuh 6-2, 6-7, 6-3
  • Taylor Townsend defeats Pauline Parmentier 6-2, 6-4
  • Alison Van Uytvanck defeats Polona Hercog 6-2, 6-2
  • Jennifer Brady defeats Kateryna Kozlova 6-2, 6-7, 6-2
  • Eugenie Bouchard defeats Gabriella Taylor 6-0, 4-6, 6-3
  • Zheng Saisai defeats Wang Qiang 6-3, 4-6, 6-1
  • Sofia Kenin defeats Maria Sakkari 6-4, 1-6, 6-1
  • Katie Boulter defeats Veronica Cepede Royg 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
  • Alison Riske defeats Mariana Duque Marino 6-1, 6-1
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