Wimbledon 2017: Johanna Konta won’t be haunted by Fed Cup tie

Johanna Konta celebrates her victory over Caroline Garcia. Pic: PA
Johanna Konta celebrates her victory over Caroline Garcia. Pic: PA
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Johanna Konta reached the rarified air of the All England Club’s last eight with a professional and nerveless 7-6, 4-6, 6-4 victory over France’s Caroline Garcia.

It’s the first time a British woman has made the quarter-finals since Jo Durie in 1984, but Konta has proved a pro when it comes to keeping a lid on emotions and dialling down expectations.

Next up today is Romania’s Simona Halep, the number two seed, who needs just one more win here to secure world number one status.

She was a semi-finalist three years ago and reached the final of the recent French Open at Roland Garros.

But Konta has won both their previous tour encounters, including a hard-fought three set quarter-final victory on her way to her career highlight success at this year’s Miami Open.

However, she lost tamely to Halep in a controversial Fed Cup tie in April, during which Konta was reduced to tears by the behaviour of Romanian team captain Ilie Nastase and a braying mob in Constanta.

Konta has neither forgiven nor forgotten Halep’s team-mate Sorana Cirstea, who was outspoken in her criticism of the British number one, after their tie was suspended when Nastase unleashed a torrent of abusive language and stoked up the home crowd.

“I’m playing against another tennis player, another opponent. I’m not playing against a crowd and I’m not playing against a past experience,” said Konta.

“People can say what they like but they were not in my shoes that day, they were not being verbally threatened. I think it’s very difficult for them to understand my position in it.

“However, it’s many, many months ago now. I’m looking forward to playing against Simona. It’s a great opportunity for me to play against one of the best in the world, and to really enjoy being in the quarter-finals of Wimbledon.

“We have some knowledge on each other. She’s very much in form and playing very, very well, she’ll definitely challenge me.”