Friday June 12th 2015
RADWANSKA CHARGES INTO SEMI-FINALS AS BRIT KONTA EXITS AEGON OPEN NOTTINGHAM
British No. 2 Johanna Konta’s quarter-final comeback at the Aegon Open Nottingham fell short as she lost 6-2 2-6 6-2 to Monica Niculescu, who faces Agnieszka Radwanska in Saturday’s semi-final after the top seed beat Lauren Davis 6-2 6-2.
American fifth seed Alison Riske also made the last four after her opponent Yanina Wickmayer retired ill with Riske up 6-2 2-0, while rainfall postponed the other quarter-final match between Ana Konjuh and qualifier Sachia Vickery to Saturday.
Local interests will be represented in the doubles semi-finals as Nottingham’s Jocelyn Rae and her partner Anna Smith eased past Niculescu and Arantxa Parra Santonja 6-1 6-3. They go on to face Yung-Jan Chan and Jie Zheng.
In the day’s first match on Centre Court, Niculescu’s sliced forehand technique proved troublesome for Konta, whose 52 unforced errors extended the wait for her first WTA semi-final.
“It does take a few games to get used to,” Konta, 24, said. “It affects the rhythm of the match and the rallies. She played very well and I’m sad that I couldn’t have done a little better.
“Credit to her, she really didn’t give me much. She was there the whole time and I did my best, but unfortunately it wasn’t enough today.”
Although, ahead of playing at the Aegon Classic Birmingham and Aegon International Eastbourne events, the World No. 147 is happy with the time she has spent on court.
Konta continued: “I’ve been able to get three really good matches on the grass, which is like gold dust going into Wimbledon.”
And world No. 61 Niculescu confessed that she is feeling fatigued after her rapid transition from clay to grass as well as reaching the doubles quarter-finals at Nottingham.
She said: “It’s tough, to be honest. I feel dead. Last week I won the Marseille ITF tournament on clay, and there I played about three hours every day in 35C. I’m getting tired, but I’m happy about my performance.”
Meanwhile, former World No. 2 and 2012 Wimbledon finalist Radwanska recorded another comfortable win at the Nottingham Tennis Centre, dispatching young American Davis in just over an hour.
“It wasn’t an easy match,” Radwanska said. “The beginnings of the sets were really tight but I was playing a little bit better and more aggressive at the end.
“Every match helps. Now I really feel the grass and I’m comfortable on it. I’m just happy that I’ve played good tennis.”
And the 26-year-old Pole is wary of the threat Niculescu poses when they battle each other on Saturday for a place in the final.
“She’s very dangerous, especially on grass. I’m not expecting an easy match tomorrow – a lot of running, a lot of rallies,” Radwanska said.
Elsewhere, Rae and Smith raced to their second straight-sets win of the tournament just before rain cancelled play for the day.
“We’re very confident,” Smith said. “We’ve played quite a lot of matches recently and I think we’re improving with every match we play and our understanding’s always getting better.”
Rae added: “I’m really glad we chose to play here. My family have come down to watch me. It was great to have the crowd behind us.”
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AEGON OPEN NOTTINGHAM - NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND
8-14 JUNE, 2015
RESULTS - JUNE 12, 2015
Singles - Quarterfinals
 [WC] A. Radwanska (POL) d L. Davis (USA) 62 62
 A. Riske (USA) d Y. Wickmayer (BEL) 62 20 Retired
M. Niculescu (ROU) d [WC] J. Konta (GBR) 62 26 62
Doubles - Quarterfinals
 Y. Chan (TPE) / J. Zheng (CHN) d C. Chuang (TPE) / O. Savchuk (UKR) 64 64
J. Rae (GBR) / A. Smith (GBR) d M. Niculescu (ROU) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP) 61 63
ORDER OF PLAY - SATURDAY, JUNE 13, 2015
CENTRE COURT start 12:00 noon
 [WC] A. Radwanska (POL) vs M. Niculescu (ROU)
 A. Riske (USA) vs A. Konjuh (CRO) or [Q] S. Vickery (USA)
 R. Kops-Jones (USA) / A. Spears (USA) vs C. Chan (TPE) / Y. Xu (CHN)
J. Rae (GBR) / A. Smith (GBR) vs  Y. Chan (TPE) / J. Zheng (CHN)
COURT 4 start 11:00 am
A. Konjuh (CRO) vs [Q] S. Vickery (USA) 00
The Aegon Open Nottingham will see two tournaments take place in June, the women’s WTA event taking place from 6-14 June 2015, and the men’s ATP event being staged from 20-27 June 2015. Both tournaments will be an integral part of the new British grass court season, which in 2015 will see a three week window between Roland Garros and Wimbledon for the first time. The extended grass court season will enable some of the world’s elite players extra time to find their feet on grass and make the most of the best grass-courts in the country.
Tickets to the Aegon Open Nottingham are on sale now. Tickets start from just £15 for an adult and £5 for a child.
For more information and to purchase tickets please visit http://www.lta.org.uk/major-events/aegon-open-nottingham
For information on the hospitality packages on offer at The Aegon Open Nottingham head to http://www.lta.org.uk/major-events/aegon-open-nottingham/nottingham-hospitality/ or contact Elliot Sheasby on firstname.lastname@example.org