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Hip injury is a concern for Konta ahead of Sydney title defence

Hip injury is a concern for Konta ahead of Sydney title defence”

Konta's exit came two days after No 2-ranked Garbine Muguruza retired in the third set of her first match of the season after struggling with leg cramps.

- World number six Elina Svitolina continued her charge at the Brisbane International as she eased past Croatia's Ana Konjuh and into the quarter-finals with a 6-3 6-1 win on Wednesday.

"I need to wait until tomorrow morning [before deciding]", she said.

"I only know the initial feelings of it", Konta explained, ".which is not always so trustworthy.

"But hopefully it's nothing more than a low-grade strain and more muscle spasm more than anything".

Konta had seemed on top form in Brisbane.

"I'm not too sure actually what happened", said Konta. She can play really well, moves well and strikes the ball pretty good.

The retirement disappointed the crowd at Pat Rafter Arena, who had witnessed a fascinating match where Konta stormed through the first set before Svitolina regrouped and edged a high-quality second in a tiebreaker. The Ukrainian twice served to stay in the second set at 4-5 at 5-6 surviving a stern test and giving hope to her dedicated fanbase at home.

"Kids - and even grown ups - are telling me they are staying up at night and watching my matches!" she revealed earlier this week.

Svitolina, 23, started the week as World No 6 but would finish it as No 4 if she wins the tournament.

Konta called for treatment to her right hip at the beginning of the third set of her quarter-final, but decided she could not continue and handed Svitolina the match 1-6, 7-6 (8/6), 3-2.

The qualifier from Belarus, who swept aside Kristina Mladenovic in the first round, prevailed 1-6 7-6 (2) 6-3 and faces Alize Cornet next.

Konta said it was an entirely new injury and unlike anything she had experienced before in her career. Cornet, the losing finalist a year ago in her only title-match in 2017, can regret for her attitude in the beginning of the second set. "I was pretty happy to go on court today", the Czech said. Take your pick. Back, lower back.



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