Johanna Konta’s preparations for Wimbledon suffered a setback on Wednesday as she was beaten in the third round at Eastbourne by Ons Jabeur. British number one Konta, a Wimbledon semi-finalist in 2017, was hoping to build on her strong clay-court season that culminated in a semi-final appearance at the French Open.
However, after losing in round two at Birmingham last week, the 28-year-old crashed out of the south-coast event 6-3 6-2 to the world number 62. Tunisia’s Jabeur, 24, fell a break behind early in the first set but upped her level as Konta faltered, easing to a comfortable victory.
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Konta seemed uneasy on the greasy surface and, after the match, Jabeur admitted that conditions may have played into her hands. “I think the rain brought me luck and the win,” she said. “I like the way I played. I like to make crazy shots. “The crowd are very fair. Konta is a great player and has inspired me in the past. I hope the crowd can come with me now.”