Australian Open: Heather Watson to face Irina Falconi in final qualifying round

Last Updated: 10/01/14 12:37pm

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Heather Watson: Didn't drop a game against Stephanie Foretz Gacon

Heather Watson: Didn't drop a game against Stephanie Foretz Gacon

Sky Bet

Heather Watson is just one win away from making the main draw at the Australian Open after an impressive performance in Melbourne.

The British No 3 had rattled off eight games on the bounce to lead Stephanie Foretz Gacon 6-0 2-0 when the Frenchwoman pulled out of the second qualifying round encounter because of a shoulder problem after only 36 minutes on court.

Watson had admitted to experiencing nerves after her first-round victory over Arina Rodionova on Thursday but looked much more at ease.

The 21-year-old has found herself back in grand slam qualifying for the first time since the French Open in 2012 following her struggles with glandular fever last year.

Watson said: "I was still very nervous but I controlled it a lot better.

Tough matches

"I knew what I wanted to do in the match. I've played Stephanie a lot of times and they've been long, tough matches.

"I knew it was going to be difficult so I focused more on me and what I wanted to do on the court, and ended up playing really, really well. I was very happy with my serve, my returns, groundstrokes, just everything.

"That's how I want to play. I came in with a different approach. It was nice to get through the first match but now I'm feeling better I want to hit the shots that I've been practicing."

In her final qualifier she will meet American Irina Falconi, who was an emphatic 6-2 6-0 winner over Chanel Simmonds.

Johanna Konta failed to join Watson in the final qualifying round after she suffered a disappointing 6-1 6-2 loss against Olga Savchuk.

It was a big disappointment for the 22-year-old Brit, who only just missed out on an automatic place in the main draw and was seeded third in qualifying.

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