Konta breaks into top 10 after reaching China final

Sat Oct 8, 2016 2:19pm EDT
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(Reuters) - Britain's Johanna Konta will become the first British woman to reach the top 10 of the WTA rankings for 32 years on Monday after reaching the China Open final on Saturday.

Konta beat American world number nine Madison Keys 7-6(1) 4-6 6-4 and will face Poland's third seed Agnieszka Radwanska in Sunday's final.

Irrespective of the result Konta is guaranteed a top-10 spot when the new rankings are released -- the first British woman to rise so high since Jo Durie in 1984.

"I know I've achieved something good whenever I'm mentioned in the same sentence as her," Konta told reporters.

The 25-year-old's rise has been meteoric.

Seventeen months ago she was ranked 146th in the world and not on anyone's radar as a potential top-10 player.

She moved to train with coach Esteban Carril in northern Spain and her form surged.

A run to the fourth round of the U.S. Open meant she ended last year inside the top 50 and her progress has continued apace, reaching the Australian Open semi-finals and earning her first WTA title at Stanford.

Consistency has been the key and her win over Keys was her seventh over a top-10 player this year.   Continued...

Tennis - China Open Women's Singles semifinal - Beijing, China - 08/10/16. Britain's Johanna Konta shakes hands with Madison Keys of the U.S. after their match.  REUTERS/Thomas Peter