Tennis Prose



A Look Back On Johanna Konta’s Career

Former world No.4 Johanna Konta made quite the surprising revelation last Wednesday, announcing her retirement from tennis.

Konta, only 30, has struggled with injury this season while the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic hardly made things better for her. She closes the curtains on a career she could look back on with satisfaction.

That said, we will take a quick look back at her professional metier.

The British national was actually born in Australia and began playing for her country of birth before moving to Britain at the age of 14. She continued to represent Australia up until 2012, when she would switch allegiances, having turned pro four years prior.

Johanna played most of her tennis on the lower circuit of the ITF before opting to become a British citizen. She snagged the 25K title at Rancho Mirage in February of 2012, the same year she became a British citizen. She was awarded a wild card at Wimbledon and would go out in the first round after putting up a fight against Christina McHale.

She made it to the final in Lexington and would also qualify for the U.S Open. Making a steady climb up the rankings, she forced her way into the top 150. The methodical baseliner lost in qualifying for the first Grand Slam of the year in the following season, however.

She debuted in the Fed Cup next to Laura Robson in doubles competition, helping Great Britain beat Bosnia Herzegovina, Portugal, and then Hungary to make it to the playoffs.

Johanna continued to rise up the rankings and made it into the top 100 in 2012. She claimed the 89th berth after a number of events, as well as the grass-court season. She fell back a few rungs by the end of it, though.

Showing renewed confidence the following season, she defeated several players ranked higher than her in various events, also making the quarters in Nottingham and the second round in Birmingham. She made the quarters in Eastbourne, beating the world No.8 in the process.

She would earn another Wimbledon wild card but was unfortunate to get Maria Sharapova in the first round and would make a quick exit.

Things would get better for Konta thereafter as she would claim some very tangible success. The Brit won her first WTA tour-level title in 2016, winning an event at Stanford and making it to a final in Beijing. She made it to the semis at the Australian Open on the back of a remarkable run that saw her elevate her status into the top 10 elites by the end of the campaign.

While she will no longer be involved in WTA affairs, on the court at least, there’s plenty of viewing and betting action to be had in her wake, and betting odds are already available for the upcoming Australian Open that kicks off in January.

The bookmakers tip Australia’s Ashleigh Barty to win the competition, naming her the outright favorite at 5/1. Naomi Osaka is 11/2 on that front while Garbine Muguruza is 12/1.

Most of the bets have been placed on Emma Raducanu, who is 16/1 to win said Grand Slam. Annet Kontaveit, also 16/1, takes up the second-largest share of bets placed.

Konta, meanwhile, was the runner-up on the grass in Nottingham the following season and she also won trophies in Miami and Sydney. She reached the Wimbledon semis that term to become the first British female to make it that far in the competition for 39 years. She reached No. 4 in the world on the back of that.

The year 2018 saw to a barren spell in terms of title but she impressed immensely, making it to the final in Nottingham, though losing out at the last hurdle. She dropped out of the top 20 and would end the year just inside the top 40.

The following year brought more production. Konta made finals in Rome and Rabat on clay, as well as the French Open semis and the quarters of the U.S Open to end the year at world No.12.

Last year, of course, was one unlike any other, with the pandemic throwing the calendar haywire and forcing the cancellation of most events. Konta ended the season at No. 14.

She won her fourth WTA Tour title in 2021, finally winning in Nottingham. Things were looking up as Wimbledon was where her sights were set. However, someone on her team tested positive for COVID-19 and she was made to withdraw as she had been in contact.

She had plunged down to No. 113 by the end of November because of the pandemic and injury, ultimately announcing her retirement.

“I think winning Nottingham this year meant a lot,” she said after her retirement. “I tried winning it twice before. Maybe because of the headspace that I was in, to be fair, things will look a little bit differently.”

Although things hardly went as planned, Johanna Konta could be proud of what she achieved over the course of her career, as can her many fans and supporters across the globe.

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  • Scoop Malinowski · December 8, 2021 at 10:57 am

    Konta came so close to greatness, her career reminds of Mary Joe Fernandez, very very good player just a couple matches from greatness.

  • Hartt · December 8, 2021 at 9:08 pm

    Along with missing Wimbledon because a member of her team had Covid, Konta contracted Covid herself and had to miss the Olympics as a result. She was off the Tour for a couple of months.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 8, 2021 at 9:41 pm

    Very bad luck for Konta this year Hartt, it’s a surprise she is okay with exiting the sport on such a bad note. One more Wimbledon shot would have been a better way. Wouldn’t be shocked if she made a comeback in a couple of years. Hope those positive tests weren’t a cover for something else…

  • catherine · December 9, 2021 at 1:57 am

    Johanna’s getting married this month. She indicated that this would be the next chapter for her. I agree she could have had a couple more years in her but who are we to question such a personal choice ?

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 9, 2021 at 9:19 am

    Catherine, nice to see Konta is ready to move on and devote most of her energies and time to her new husband than to hitting a tennis ball. Not sure Billie Jean King would approve of this decision but it is what it is.

  • Bill McGill · December 9, 2021 at 2:19 pm

    The first time I saw Konta play was 2015 US Open first round. I actually went to watch Louisa Chirico, who was a local girl that used to play with the same coach my then-pre-teen children played for and Chirico was a good sport and used to hit with my girls now and then. Chirico had gotten a wildcard into US Open and was lucky enough to draw a qualifier in the first round, so I was thinking she had a chance. That qualifier was Konta and Konta just destroyed her with pinpoint serving and aggressively closing points at the net. I felt bad for Chirico losing to a qualifier like that. Then Konta beat Muguruza and Petkovic before losing to to Kvitova.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 9, 2021 at 4:46 pm

    Bill, good story, but tough luck for Chirico. I saw Chirico’s breakout at Citi Open, she beat someone really good, I cant’ remember who, and looked like a future force in the WTA but somehow she fizzled out and has not done anything since. That had to be aboust six years ago, she was I think 18 or 19 at the time. Chirico, Kayla Day, Sam Crawford, Jamie Hampton, Melanie Oudin, Cici Bellis – all young Americans who showed tremendous early promise and then just totally fizzled out for one reason or another. Konta was a very technical, methodical and at times feisty player with that kooky serve ritual.

  • catherine · December 11, 2021 at 3:56 am

    Konta dumped Wim Fisette after he helped her to her best ever ranking. That was basically the end of any hope she had of reaching No 1. On the surface, their parting was amicable – polite emails were exchanged etc. The reason was debated here but my belief is simply that Johanna didn’t want to follow Wim’s coaching plans, and in that case what was the point ? She never successfully settled with another coach (Michael Joyce departed after a short stint) and has, IMO, ended her career at the right time. She lacked strong ambition and could be emotionally vulnerable.

    Of course Fisette was then freed to coach Kerber quite successfully until they parted, far from amicably, but the reasons turned out to be the same.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 11, 2021 at 8:08 am

    I dont’ see why Fissette is such a valuable coach. Konta learned his methods and should have remembered it. How did he make her play better and how does he make every player get better results? His track record is undeniable but what is he doing or saying? Every player just keeps playing the same baseline style, I don’t see any changes. He’s a miracle worker. It’s curious what he’s doing or saying that almost every other coach can’t match.

  • catherine · December 11, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    “For me, I felt like Wim told me so much information before the match, it wasn’t really clicking. But the closer it got, the more I felt like I could rely on that information.”

    This is Naomi shortly after linking up with Fisette and I saved it because I thought it gave an insight into how he worked. He’s also very perceptive about character – Hartt quoted from an interview with him, maybe last year, where he discussed his parting from Kerber, based on his reading of her personality and the effect of that on her play. I probably have the quote somewhere. Early on she said Fisette was ‘exactly the right coach for me.’ But after she won W’don she lost motivation, very likely ceased following his program and everything fell apart. As far as his effect on her game goes, he spotted her weaknesses and tried to encourage her to play with more aggression, although that was not her natural instinct. Away from him she couldn’t maintain that approach. Maybe she still remembers some of the things he taught her, who knows ?

    Observers have complained that Wim seldom stays with one player for very long. It’ll be interesting to see how this works out with Naomi. As far as Konta goes, I just don’t think she had the application, something like that, and Wim realised she was unlikely to change.

    Most (all ?)contemporary women play a baseline game – I doubt that Fisette ever thought he could turn any of his charges into serve/volleyers. He’s a psychological operator more than technical.

    I would say that parting from Fisette was Angie’s single biggest mistake in her career.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 11, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    Catherine, thanks for those quotes, whatever he’s doing and saying it’s working, his track record proves it. You would guess when the big results come to his players, he expects to be fairly compensated and that may be a factor in his dismissals. I know two ATP no. 1s fired Cahill and Lundgren shortly before they became no. 1 so as to avoid paying out a $1m bonus to these coaches. Cruel business.

  • catherine · December 12, 2021 at 1:53 am

    Yes, Wim admitted ‘money was also an issue’ with Kerber. Of course it was and financial terms should have been written into the contract and understood by both. If that wasn’t the case then somebody blundered, and I doubt it was Fisette.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 12, 2021 at 7:31 am

    Landsdorp got a Wimbledon towel from Sharapova for winning Wimbledon. Thanks Maria.

  • Hartt · December 13, 2021 at 9:18 am

    Emma Raducanu tested positive for Covid and is out of the Abu Dhabi exhibition. This can’t be great for her off season training either.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 12:30 pm

    No symptons?

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 12:31 pm

    I tested positive three days before our trip to Zurich in Sept, we had to cancel the whole trip. No symptoms, no cough, no nothing. Positive test means nothing. Emma will be great in 2022.

  • catherine · December 13, 2021 at 12:37 pm

    She could have picked it up on the plane. The new variant is spreading so fast now that rules and regs will be changing daily. There’s a mad scramble here to get the booster out – Emma may not have had one yet.

    Covid aside, I’m not indulging in high hopes for her in Oz – she’ll be out of practise and won’t be acclimatised. Expect to see the media dump on her.

  • catherine · December 13, 2021 at 12:48 pm

    Like a majority of players Emma has been double jabbed but the Omicron requires a booster. Many players may not know that. Another issue – breakthrough infections for those previously vaxxed. Could be a big problem for AO.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 1:16 pm

    I bet Emma has no symptoms. And you know what that means…

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 1:44 pm

    “Every other dilemma facing our people is ongoing, which is to say the likes of street crime, pestilence, immigration, taxes, our corrupted media, schools and sacred institutions and all the rest are not going away; at some level they will always be with us. But these experimental innoculations and their impact on humanity – both immediate and long term – are being decided right, right now. The longer this goes on, the worse the vaccine will look as its efficacy continues to drop while the vaxed populace becomes ever more sickly and the tyranny more obvious. So it is truly a race against time. To appreciate the urgency here, ask yourself this: Have you ever seen the globalists push so hard or move so fast to achieve a single goal? Or try and force their will on all the peoples of the world at the same time? Me neither; that alone should signal the direst warning.”

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 1:45 pm

    Africa is only 6% vaccinated, and covid has practically disappeared… scientists “baffled”

    Almost nobody in Africa is getting “vaccinated” for the Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19), and as a result there is almost no covid anywhere to be found on the continent. The latest reports from the mainstream media admit that the plandemic is basically non-existent in Africa, which is confusing to those who believe the narrative that the jabs are helping to eradicate disease.

    A recent piece from the Associated Press (AP) explains that in Zimbabwe, nobody wears a mask, nobody is vaccinated, and life goes on as normal. People pack the local markets in close proximity to one another and, by golly, nobody is getting sick. “Covid-19 is gone,” stated a man named Nyasha Ndou, who joked with reporters about how he keeps a mask in his pants “to protect my pocket.” “When did you last hear of anyone who has died of Covid-19?” he further asked, adding that the only reason he keeps a mask on his person is to avoid potential confrontations with corrupt local police. In the past week, Zimbabwe recorded just 33 new “cases” of the Chinese Virus. And most of these are more than likely fake, seeing as how the PCR tests are completely fraudulent and designed to pick up the common cold. This is further substantiated by the fact that there have been no covid deaths, even by the government’s corrupt reporting standards.

    For all intents and purposes, the Fauci Flu is gone from Zimbabwe, even without the injections. The only areas of the world seeing mass disease and death are those pushing the “vaccines”

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 3:10 pm

    Wonder who controls the African media?

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 6:49 pm

    Philadelphia—COVID-19 vaccination proof will soon be required to dine at bars and restaurants in the city. The mandate goes into effect on January 3, 2022.

    Meanwhile here in Florida – no mandates – no masks – do what you want – eat where you want – Kids in school unmasked – lowest COVID cases in the country.

  • Scoop Malinowski · December 13, 2021 at 6:51 pm

    Those who warn you about rising sea levels are buying beachfront property.

    Those who warn you about covid are throwing parties and taking vacations.

    Those who tell you giving up your guns will make you safe, are hiring armed security.

    Awake yet???



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