Unseeded Czech Barbora Strycova weathered an early storm to flatten British hopes with a 7-6 (5), 6-1 defeat of Johanna Konta in the Wimbledon quarter-finals on Tuesday.
Her dominant win over Sloane Stephens, her second in the space of a month, promised more, and sure enough, while a close first set was sealed by Kvitova with a break for 6-4, Konta powered up in the second with some formidable baseline tennis, throwing in passes and lobs to break twice and lead 5-1.
Following the match, however, just as after her recent French Open semi-final defeat by another tricky Czech, Marketa Vondrousova, she slipped back into the "no regrets" mantra. Konta also made a Wimbledon semi-final in 2017, and arrived at SW19 following her best ever clay season, with another Major semi at Roland Garros. "It's true that the serve probably didn't work as good as two days ago", said Nadal, who had been equally ruthless in the third round against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga when he lost just seven games. However, two costly forehand errors from the Brit at 5-5 in the breaker handed Strycova a hard-fought opening set.
While the 33-year-old Strycova played impressively to outsmart the 18th seed, Konta was the architect of her own downfall as she blazed 34 unforced errors against an opponent who simply had too much guile.
She even fired down a second serve ace as she moved 3-0 ahead with Strycova looking vulnerable in every rally.
Argentine Guido Pella came from two sets down to beat 2016 finalist Milos Raonic 3-6 4-6 6-3 7-6 (7-3) 8-6 and set up quarter-final with Robert Batista Agut, who beat Benoit Paire, winning 6-3 7-5 6-2.
The match went on till the final set as expected.
Johanna Konta remains in contention to win her maiden Grand Slam title at Wimbledon, but who do you think will come out victorious? So I was happy to stick with what I was doing well.
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"I think it's a great workout because sometimes you just need to let go of the negative things in your head", she said.
Something between a sigh and a groan escaped from the crowd as Kvitova pumped her fist and stalked back to her chair leaving Konta to wonder what had just happened and the British crowd to start contemplating what might have been.
Rafael Nadal reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals for the seventh time on Monday as the evergreen 30-somethings of men's tennis threatened to take a stranglehold at the All England Club.
"I was playing a lot of slice". The 19th seed has now won 14 of the last 15 matches in which she has been taken the distance.
"I couldn't begin to say what it means to me", she told BBC Sport.
Federer will meet Kei Nishikori after he beat Mikhail Kukushkin 6-3 3-6 6-3 6-4 to make his 12th grand slam quarter-final.
"I am not thinking about sending a message to anyone or the next generation, how they are coming or not".