Tennis is a funny old game. One of the low points of this fledging tennis season for Johanna Konta came in the 2nd round of the Australian Open 2018 - losing out in the to American lucky loser Bernarda Pera.

Konta and Pera meet again in Doha

Circa three weeks after this shock defeat in Melbourne, Johanna Konta has been handed the opportunity to gain sweet lasting revenge in the Qatar Total Open 1st round.

This match is the ultimate test of the 'lightning can't strike twice' proverb', as many will fancy Konta to gain revenge. Konta was in Federation Cup action last week, and this will have sharpened her up. Neither player has played in a WTA tournament since the Australian Open.

Bernarda Pera had never played in the main Slam draw before last month. Initially, she wasn't supposed to be playing in the Australian Open main draw either, having lost to Swiss player Viktorija Golubic in the final qualifying round. She made the most of her lucky loser status and it will be interesting to see how much confidence her run to the third round has given her.

Pera leads the head-to-head

There has been no other meeting between this pair than last month's Australian Open encounter. It was a straight-sets victory and Konta seemed perplexed by the speed and range of Pera. It is not a given that the head-to-head will be equalised here. Johanna Konta has been struggling for focus since late last season. She has the obvious class but needs more focus in matches.

Konta needs a convincing performance to boost confidence

Looking ahead for Konta - this is a tough tournament.

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With the likes of Petra Kvitova, Garbine Muguruzza, Simon Halep, Maria Sharapova and Caroline Wozniacki all lining up, the Brit will need to be on her A-game early.

Since her impressive run to the Wimbledon semi-final - Konta has suffered some embarrassing reversals. The most embarrassing of which came late last season in the China Open against Mona Niculescu. Konta won three games in that entire match, her opponent looked stunned and amazed as to how easy the task became. The Brit has obviously done a great deal of soul-searching since then, but her start to this season has been unspectacular, to say the least.

A return of the fearless, strong serving Konta who won the Miami Masters last season is needed, in order to avoid further embarrassing defeats. Konta cannot go on court in Doha thinking that victory is a given, she needs to respect her opponent. At least she has a recent reminder of what will happen if she doesn't!

This intriguing contest takes place on Tuesday 13/2/18 at 09;00 GMT.