Infotainment Factory: Australian Open under fire after 'dangerous' late start

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Friday, 18 January 2019

Australian Open under fire after 'dangerous' late start


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The Australian Open has come under fire from Johanna Konta after she was involved in the latest-starting women's match in the tournament's history.

Konta was left fuming after starting her second-round clash with 18th seed Garbine Muguruza at 12.30am before walking off the court defeated two hours and 42 minutes later with the time at 3.12am.

Following her loss, Konta as left less than impressed by the tournament's organisers for scheduling such a late match.

"I don't agree with athletes having to physically exert themselves in the wee hours of the morning," she told the BBC after the defeat.

Johanna Konta

"I don't think it is healthy - in fact it is quite dangerous.

"However, Garbine and I were both in the same position and, with the circumstances, we really put on a great match and it's just a shame more people couldn't enjoy it."

The start to the contest was delayed after the men's match between fourth seed Alexander Zverev and Jeremy Chardy went for close to four hours.

Konta also revealed that the contest could have been shifted to an outside court if not for bird droppings.

Garbine Muguruza

"We were actually going to go out to court three to start," she said.

"There was basically seagull poo everywhere.

"They had to clean the court. By the time they would have cleaned the court, we would have been in the same boat anyway."

Muguruza and Konta beat out the previous record for the latest start which was set by Daria Gavrilova and Elise Mertens who began their second-round clash at 11.59pm.

Muguruza will face Switzerland's Timea Bacsinsky in a third-round clash as she aims to add to her career tally of two Grand Slams.

The Australian Open has come under fire from Johanna Konta after she was involved in the latest-starting women's match in the tournament's history.

Konta was left fuming after starting her second-round clash with 18th seed Garbine Muguruza at 12.30am before walking off the court defeated two hours and 42 minutes later with the time at 3.12am.

Following her loss, Konta as left less than impressed by the tournament's organisers for scheduling such a late match.

"I don't agree with athletes having to physically exert themselves in the wee hours of the morning," she told the BBC after the defeat.

Johanna Konta

"I don't think it is healthy - in fact it is quite dangerous.

"However, Garbine and I were both in the same position and, with the circumstances, we really put on a great match and it's just a shame more people couldn't enjoy it."

The start to the contest was delayed after the men's match between fourth seed Alexander Zverev and Jeremy Chardy went for close to four hours.

Konta also revealed that the contest could have been shifted to an outside court if not for bird droppings.

Garbine Muguruza

"We were actually going to go out to court three to start," she said.

"There was basically seagull poo everywhere.

"They had to clean the court. By the time they would have cleaned the court, we would have been in the same boat anyway."

Muguruza and Konta beat out the previous record for the latest start which was set by Daria Gavrilova and Elise Mertens who began their second-round clash at 11.59pm.

Muguruza will face Switzerland's Timea Bacsinsky in a third-round clash as she aims to add to her career tally of two Grand Slams.

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