Watson run ended by Keys

  • Last Updated: June 20 2014, 17:30 BST

Heather Watson's run in Eastbourne came to an end with a 6-3 6-1 semi-final defeat by rising star Madison Keys at the Aegon International.

Heather Watson: Beaten by hard-hitting Madison Keys in Eastbourne
Heather Watson: Beaten by hard-hitting Madison Keys in Eastbourne

Watson was the first British player to contest a last-four match at the tournament since Jo Durie 32 years ago and was looking to make the biggest final of her career.

But she could not cope with the power of 19-year-old Rock Island native Keys, who also won their encounter in the first round of Wimbledon last year.

Watson was still struggling to get over glandular fever at that stage and had high hopes of a different outcome this time but it was not to be as Keys eased to victory.

In her first WTA Tour final the American will play fifth seed Angelique Kerber, who battled past Caroline Wozniacki 3-6 7-6 (7-3) 6-3.

Despite the loss it has been a hugely positive week for Watson, who secured the first top-20 scalp of her career by beating Flavia Pennetta in round two.

She should see her ranking climb around 10 spots from its current position of 70 ahead of Wimbledon, where she will open her campaign against another talented young player, Croatian Ajla Tomljanovic