WHEN Jo Konta dropped to her knees in celebration on winning her quarter-final at Wimbledon on Monday some of us were concerned in reading it as a possible indication that in living up to her seeding by earning a place in the quarter-finals she had achieved her principal ambition.

It was, then, all the more tempting when she was broken in her first service game by the championship’s second seed Simona Halep, to muse knowingly that it had been a decent run, but was on the point of being over. Johanna had given us hope, but only for the longer term future. How wrong we were proven to be in the ensuing two and a half hours.

The first evidence that she had no intention of quietly departing the scene was provided when she broke back in the seventh game of the set and while she was ultimately to lose it, having to battle through a tie-break in a set lasting a gruelling 51 minutes represented a much tougher battle for Halep than she might have been anticipating when she started so well.

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From that point it was Konta who was the more determined to impose herself, earning a couple of break points on her opponent’s opening service game of the second set and doing so again in the eighth game of the set. While all four of them were thrown away by errors they were attributable more to aggression in going for too much, rather than any timidity. Another tie-break, then and this time, after initially slipping 3-1 behind, it was Konta who found what she needed to take the set.

The second seed then made what was to be her last significant challenge in Konta’s first service game of the deciding set. At 30-40 she had her chance, but was denied by a typically brave forehand which caught the line. There would be three deuces but no more break points in that direction in the game or the match. Instead, the next opportunities came the way of the British player as she drove Halep ever deeper into the court to get to 15-40, then stretched her on both wings to force a third successive error on the forehand side.

Leading 3-2 in the decider was a treacherous advantage, Halep determinedly ensuring with successive holds to love that Konta must effectively serve for the set not once but three times, potentially draining her emotional energy, but that is where the discipline that seems so central to Konta’s approach, worked to her huge advantage. “I felt very clear about what I was trying to achieve,” she said afterwards, as she re-set sights on a semi-final meeting with Venus Williams.

“I don’t give myself too much time to dream. I’m more focused on the work. I knew she was not going to give me much so I had to create my own chances and I thought I did that.”

If she could not be accused of trying to cultivate it her efforts have inevitably earned her great backing from the home support and, with Halep having complained about some of the noises being made by spectators throughout, Konta acknowledged that.

“I think they were a little bit over-enthusiastic at times, but I feel very excited and very humbled by that support,” she said.