If you’re going to win your first WTA singles title, why not make it over a legend? That was the case in Stanford as Great Britain’s Johanna Konta captured her first WTA singles crown, in her first ever WTA level final, against future Hall of Famer Venus Williams at the 2016 Bank of the West Classic. I say “Great Britain’s Johanna Konta” but her path to tennis stardom started in Australia, moving on to Spain, then Great Britain, back to Spain…with a stop in Texas…well, you get the point. Some of her peripatetic ways were due to a need to go where she could find funding. That shouldn’t be a problem anymore. Although this is her first singles title, her star has been rising in the tennis world over the last year. Casual fans might ask who is Johanna Konta, but hardcore tennis fans are not surprised that she is a winner. Perhaps we would not have thought she would beat Venus 7-5 5-7 6-2 for her maiden trophy, but sooner or later this was a player many within the tennis world were waiting on to break through. It was tough on this day. Konta was up a set and two breaks at 7-5 4-1 but was pushed to a third set when Venus dug deep and showed her champion’s heart in fighting back to win set #2. Konta showed her own inner fortitude not to crumble. After blowing out Dominika Cibulkova in the semifinals and denying Venus her 50th singles title in the final, Johanna has announced herself as a threat to win against anybody on any given day.
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3 JOHANNA KONTA d. 1 Venus Williams, 7-5 5-7 6-2