Johanna Konta held her nerve against Heather Watson in a tight first-set tie-break before cruising through to the second round of the US Open courtesy of a 7-6(7) 6-1 win.
Konta, whose best showing at Flushing Meadows was reaching the quarter-finals in 2019, was pushed all the way in the first set – fending off six set points – before pulling away via a dominant second-set performance.
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British No 1 Konta had served for the first set at 5-4 but a resolute Watson broke and forced a tie-break. In fact, Watson, 28, had six opportunities to take the first set – two in game 12 and four more in the tie-break that followed – but it was Konta who took a one-set advantage at the first time of asking.
And from there it was all Konta, who was on the cusp of bageling her Fed Cup team-mate in the second set before eventually taking it 6-1.
After the match a buoyant Konta likened her US Open experience to that of a cruise, saying:
It's kind of like a cruise. I've actually never been on a cruise, but this is how I imagine a cruise to be - we're stuck in the middle of the Pacific and we can't get off the boat, so it's that kind of scenario, as I'm imagining it. I don't feel like I'm in New York. Every so often I see a skyline of Manhattan accidentally, and I'm like, oh my gosh, it's there!
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