Great Britain’s Johanna Konta has hit back at Romanian claims that she feigned tears during their rancorous Fed Cup tie, in which the hosts’ captain Ilie Nastase was ejected for abusing the British team.
Konta’s match with Sorana Cirstea on Saturday was suspended after she became visibly distressed at barracking from the crowd and alleged verbal abuse from Nastase.
Cirstea suggested Konta had exaggerated her reaction to gain an advantage but, speaking after Romania had completed victory on Sunday, the British No1 refuted that accusation.
“With all due respect to Sorana, she wasn’t on my side of the court, she didn’t feel verbally threatened, she wasn’t in my shoes,” said Konta.
“I think there may have been a lack of communication to her about what was going on on my side of the court but I think nobody should have to put up with – in life or in any way – to feel verbally threatened and subjected to that sort of abuse.”
Konta admitted still being affected by the ugly spat in her 6-1, 6-3 defeat to Simona Halep on Sunday, which put Romania ahead in the tie.
Irina-Camelia Begu clinched victory by beating Heather Watson 6-4, 7-5, consigning Britain to the competition’s third tier, the Europe/Africa Zone, for another year, despite Laura Robson and Jocelyn Rae’s doubles win over Halep and Monica Niculescu.