Aegon International: Eastbourne’s Konta faces Diyas on centre court

Johanna Konta

Johanna Konta

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The home crowd will be roaring Johanna Konta towards victory on Sunday afternoon as she looks to progress to the second round of the Aegon International Eastbourne.

Local resident Konta will not have far to travel when she faces 21-year-old Kazakhstani Zarina Diyas on centre court at Devonshire Park on Sunday.

Diyas, ranked 46th in the tournament, will not only be up against the highly popular Konta but also 5,000 fans cheering the Eastbourne youngster on to victory.

Britain’s chance of a a first tournament winner in 40 years lies on Konta and fellow countryman Heather Watson’s shoulders after Laura Robson suffered a straight sets defeat to Russian Daria Gavrilova (6-0, 6-1) on Saturday.

Robson took up a wildcard to compete in the qualifying match, making her competitive return from injury after 17 months out.

24-year-old Konta will hope for better luck when she faces Diyas. Victory would see the Australian-born Brit face Ekaterina Makarova, ranked eighth in the world, in the second round.

Last week in Birmingham Konta, 24, dropped just four games on her way to a 6-1 6-3 victory over Australian Jarmila Gajdosova.

In the second round of the AEGON Classic Konta lost against Karolina Pliskova, who was eventual losing finalist to German Angelique Kerber.