Johanna Konta cruises through in Italian Open with straight sets win

Tennis
Johanna Konta
Johanna Konta

Johanna Konta is safely through to the second round of the Italian Open after beating Magdalena Rybarikova in straight sets.

A week on from knocking Rybarikova out at the same stage of the Madrid Open, Konta claimed a 6-4 6-3 victory over the 17th seed in one hour and 48 minutes.

Konta had been due to play Petra Kvitova in Rome only for the Czech to pull out of the tournament after winning back-to-back titles in Prague and Madrid.

The unseeded British number one will play Hsieh Su-wei or Aryna Sabalenka in the next round.

Konta, who has not reached the quarter-finals of a tournament since early January in Brisbane, displayed impressive resilience in the first set to secure back-to-back breaks after losing her serve in the seventh game.

The world number 22 fell a break down again in the second set but dug deep to win the big points as she reeled off four straight games for a morale-boosting victory.

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