Johanna Konta retires from Brisbane International with injury

Konta needed treatment but played on until she eventually retired when 3-2 down in the deciding set
Konta needed treatment but played on until she eventually retired when 3-2 down in the deciding set

Johanna Konta hopes to defend her Sydney International title next week despite retiring with injury in the Brisbane International quarter-final.

The British number one needed treatment on her right hip during the deciding set against Elina Svitolina and ended the match when serving at 3-2 down.

Konta, 26, will be assessed on Friday but is "unclear" on what the injury is.

But her focus on Sydney will ease concerns she may miss the Australian Open, which begins on 15 January.

"I will definitely give it the maximum amount of time to be able to play in Sydney," said Konta.

"I started feeling it in my right hip/groin area in the second game of the third set. I felt a little bit of pain go through there. I couldn't really load through that right leg.

"As of now, it's a bit of a waiting game. The most important thing now will be to get some physio treatment, have a good night's sleep and wake up tomorrow and see where to take it from there."

World number nine Konta had looked to be in fine touch against Svitolina as she dominated to take the first set 6-1 but then lost a second-set tie-break 8-6 before finding trouble with her injury.

She underwent treatment early on in the decider before ending the entertaining match after two hours and 12 minutes, sending 23-year-old Svitolina through to the Brisbane semi-final for the second year in succession.

"Hopefully Jo will recover quickly and we will see her back on court soon," said Svitolina, who plays either defending champion Karolina Pliskova or Kaia Kanepi.

"She played a really good match today and you can see she's really playing well."

Konta had not reached a quarter-final of an event since the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati in August and her run at this tournament raised hope she could again enjoy success at the Australian Open, where she reached the quarter-finals in 2017 and semi-finals in 2016.

Elsewhere on Thursday, Great Britain's Kyle Edmund ground out a 7-6 5-7 6-4 victory over South Korea's Hyeon Chung to reach round three of the men's singles in Brisbane.

Edmund will now face either number-one seed Grigor Dimitrov or Australian wildcard John Millman.

'Konta returning to eye-catching form' - analysis

BBC Tennis correspondent Russell Fuller

The sight of a British player limping down the corridor has become all too familiar in recent months, but Konta hopes this hip problem proves to be a low-grade strain or even a muscle spasm.

She will learn more on Friday morning, after the hip has had a chance to settle. Konta is desperate to defend her Sydney title next week, in the city of her birth, but surely won't take an unnecessary risk with the Australian Open just eleven days away.

Up until injury forced her retirement, Konta had been playing with eye catching power and precision. She looked every inch the woman who played so impressively in Australia last January, when only Serena Williams was able to stop her in the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park.

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