Jo Konta’s second-round clash with Garbine Muguruza is latest ever Australian Open match, starting at 12.30AM… after efforts to get the match moved to Court 3 botched by seagull droppings and staff shortage!
- Jo Konta had to wait until after midnight to get on court on day four
- Her clash with Garbine Muguruza was fifth scheduled on Margaret Court Arena
- Melbourne Park does not operate with a night curfew, unlike Wimbledon
Jo Konta was forced to wait until after midnight for her second-round clash with Garbine Muguruza to finally get underway at the Australian Open.
As day four seeped into day five, the British No 1 arrived on court for the latest start time of any clash in the history of the competition.
Her match with the former Wimbledon champion was the fifth scheduled on the Margaret Court Arena on Thursday, which witnessed two five-setters as Kei Nishikori beat Ivo Karlovic and Alexander Zverev survived a comeback from Jeremy Chardy.
Jo Konta had to wait until after midnight for her clash with Garbine Muguruza to get underway
The second-round clash became the latest start-time to a match in Australian Open history
The other two matches saw Naomi Osaka through to the third-round in straight sets and Venus Williams beat Alize Cornet in three.
The match was almost moved to Court 3, but a shortage of staff to clean up bird muck left by a flock of seagulls put paid to that.
While Wimbledon famously has an 11pm curfew due to local council restrictions, no such issues arise Down Under as Konta walked on at 12.23am local time.
The previous record was set only last year, when Daria Gavrilova and Elise Mertens went on court at Melbourne Park at 11.59pm.
Margaret Court Arena remained packed on Thursday night as the clock ticked past midnight
But the crowd dwindled as play got underway at a record late time on day four
But the pair will have to go someway yet to beat the record for the latest finish time at the Major.
That was set back in 2008 when Lleyton Hewitt and Marcos Baghdatis played a five-set match that finished at 4.33am.
But the last Grand Slam meeting between Konta and Muguruza lasted three hours and 23 minutes, back at the US Open in 2015.