Wuhan Open: Johanna Konta sets up Venus Williams showdown

Johanna Konta fights back to beat Simona Halep 6-3 3-6 7-5 and reach the quarter-finals of the Wuhan Open in China

British qualifier Johanna Konta earned herself a thrilling 6-3 3-6 7-5 win over top seed and world No2 Simona Halep at the Dongfeng Motor Wuhan Open on Wednesday.

Konta came from 1-5 down in the third set to tee up a quarter-final on Thursday against Venus Williams in China and said afterwards that playing the American would be “kind of a childhood dream”.

“She [Halep] is number for a reason, and that is an incredibly humbling experience for me, that I can compete with such a player,” said 24-year-old Konta.

“It was two hours and 17 minutes of very, very tough tennis for me. Simona really played some unbelievable tennis in parts – she may not be feeling her best, but I’m just really happy I was able to take a few of the chances I created.”

She continued: “In terms of the result, I’m just really happy I get to come back tomorrow and play against someone like Venus. It’s actually a bit of childhood dream I guess.

“I grew up watching Venus. So as a child, I’m like, Wow. But as a competitor now, I’m just looking forward to the challenge.”

Williams was too strong for Carla Suarez-Navarro in their third-round encounter, winning 6-3 6-4.

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