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Croatian-American Bernarda Pera Shocks World No.10 at Australian Open

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Johanna Konta suffered a surprise defeat

The Zadar-born 23-year-old, who is ranked No.123 in the world, has knocked out British No.1 and world No.10 Johanna Konta to reach the third round of the Australian Open.

Aiming to maintain her record of reaching at least the last eight on her last two participations in this competition, the ninth seed suffered the only loss of serve of the opening set in the ninth game. "I don't feel, by any means, it's a massive catastrophe". Komta might have recognised her opponent Bernarda Pera from their days on the lower tiers, but it was a first time meeting - which can throw up its own challenges.

Pera took out the match in straight sets 6-4 7-5.

"I don't think I did enough with my service games, and I don't think I did enough with my returns, as well".

'I'm actually looking forward to just continuing to play.

Her next appointment is representing Britain in the Fed Cup Euro-African playoffs early next month.

But Konta said: "She played very inspired throughout and I didn't do enough at the beginning when I had little windows to put my stamp on the match".

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However, on a steaming-hot morning with temperatures well into the nineties it became clear early on that she can properly play.

The way she lost the final point, totally miscuing a routine smash, summed up a desperate day.

And this time Pera did the business to seal the biggest win of her career and one of Konta's worst defeats since her rise to the top of tennis.

The third seed, whose preparation was hampered by a thigh injury, was always trailing against the world number 88 before being edged out 7-6 (7/1), 6-4 in one hour and 59 minutes on Rod Laver Arena.

Only then, when serving for the match, did Pera's nerves kick in and Konta broke back to level the set at 5-5.

The British No 1 got her to 30-30 in the next game but that was answered with two straight aces.

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