The rain delay on Tuesday at the Aegon International in Eastbourne wrecked havoc. Nevertheless, there is a backlog of matches to be played as the tournament due to finish on Saturday. Wimbledon is set to start next Monday. Players are having to play matches twice in one day to keep the schedule in order.
Britain's fifth seed Johanna Konta is playing in her third consecutive grass court event after finishing as a runner-up to Donna Vekic in Nottingham, and she was completely outplayed in the third round by Coco Vandeweghe in Birmingham. Nonetheless, the British number was playing in front of her home crowd in Eastbourne, where she narrowly missed out on reaching the final last year.
Konta dispatched former world number 21 Sorana Cirstea, 6-2, 6-2 in just one hour and 12 minutes on Centre Court. The Brit had to be quick as she is due to play against the 10th seed and newly-crowned French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko for a place in the quarterfinals later on this evening, weather permitting.
Konta demolishes Cirstea in the opening set
Both players traded breaks in the early proceedings on Day 4 of the Aegon International in Eastbourne. Moreover, the fifth seed was able to regain the break advantage by producing devastating forehands to move the Romanian around the court.
Konta was the first player to hold serve in the match with an easy service game and consolidated the break in the process to lead 3-1. Cirstea finally held onto her serve in the next game but she was a break down at 3-2.
Cirstea has endured numerous injury problems to her shoulder over the years, and the Romanian advanced to the quarterfinals of the French Open in 2009 at the age of 19. She returned well in the next service game, and she was threatening to break back as she raced out to a 15-40 lead. Nonetheless, Konta fended them off quickly, and the Brit held onto her serve with a delightful lob over Cirstea, who was stranded at the net.
The Brit's backhand was firing on all cylinders, and she continued to cause the 27-year-old some problems. Cirstea was feeling the pressure as she faced two break points on her own serve, and the relentless of Konta's return was too much for the Romanian. Konta gained the double break that she was looking for with a strong backhand return, forcing another error from Cirstea.
The world number seven trailed 0-30 when she was serving for the opening set but she found her serve at the right time, and she sealed the first set in her pocket with a good serve out wide, taking it
6-2 in 32 minutes.
Konta wins her first match of the day to reach the last 16
The opening game of the second set was crucial for the world number 62 as she needed to hold onto her serve to have any chance of beating Konta. The Romanian had plenty of game points but she was unable to convert any of them and in a lengthy eight-minute game, the fifth seed got a dream start in the second set with a low backhand winner down the line.
Cirstea would be checking out of the hotel, and heading out of Wimbledon rather rapidly as she continued to commit unforced errors, and the Brit got the double break advantage, leading 3-0. Konta's volleying skills were on point in this match, and she stretched out to a 4-0 lead with a one-two combination of a good serve out wide, followed by a backhand winner down the line.
The world number 62 finally had an easy service game and got onto the scoreboard with some good serving but Konta quickly
held serve to love, continuing to show brilliance and extending an unassailable lead to 5-1.
The 2009 French Open quarterfinalist quickly trailed at 0-30 and she was two points away from defeat. However, she managed to send down an T and was able to win the game by producing some fine forehand winners down the line.
Last year's semifinalist had a few problems when she was serving for the match at 15-30 but she was clinical and managed to win the match by producing a stunning backhand winner down the line to win the match, 6-2, 6-2 in an hour and 12 minutes. The Brit will play French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko in the final match scheduled on Centre Court, following the conclusion of the match between the men's second seed Gael Monfils and her compatriot Cameron Norrie.