Konta’s Wimbledon preparation hit by third round exit at Eastbourne

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Johanna Konta was knocked out in the third round (Bradley Collyer/PA)

Johanna Konta suffered a significant setback in her preparations for Wimbledon when she lost in straight sets to Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur in the third round at Eastbourne.

The British number one will therefore enter Wimbledon having played only four grass-court matches, after also being eliminated at the second-round stage in Birmingham last week.

She led by a break in the first set before eventually succumbing to a 6-3 6-2 defeat, missing out on a quarter-final clash against Alize Cornet.

Konta made a promising start against Jabeur, the world number 62, in moving 3-2 ahead but her opponent immediately broke back and seized the momentum to thereafter largely ease to victory.

She also played as though hesitant on a surface that had been rained on, and struggled to convince with her serve.

Konta, who during the clay-court season had reached two WTA finals and the final four of the French Open, is the 19th seed at Wimbledon, which begins on Monday.

Dan Evans has progressed to the quarter-finals of the men’s competition after a straight-sets victory over Pierre-Hugues Herbert of France.

The British number three will next meet the winner of Wednesday evening’s all-British match between Kyle Edmund and Cameron Norrie.

He impressed in taking the first set 6-3 against the player scheduled to be Andy Murray’s doubles partner at Wimbledon.

After being broken in the second, he showed his growing frustration when he threw his racket to the ground, and received a warning from the umpire when he then had to replace it.

Evans then broke Herbert, who in turn became frustrated, and retained his sense of momentum to go 6-5 up and earn the first of two match points on the Frenchman’s serve.

Dan Evans reacts after winning the match
Dan Evans reacts after winning the match (Bradley Collyer/PA)

He required only one, therefore securing the convincing 6-3 7-5 victory and ensuring a British player will reach the final four.

Edmund was confirmed as Evans’ opponent on Thursday after an even more convincing victory over Norrie.

The British number one, aged 24, eased past the number two via a 6-2 6-2 scoreline.

A year on from him overcoming Andy Murray on the same centre court at Eastbourne, he was clinical in building a 5-2 lead in the opening set.

Kyle Edmund in action at Eastbourne
Kyle Edmund in action at Eastbourne (Bradley Collyer/PA)

Play was then halted for over 45 minutes while a spectator received medical attention after falling ill.

If that represented a chance for Norrie, 23, to regroup, Edmund refused to let him take it.

After seeing out the opening set, he also dominated the second, again winning 6-2.

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