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Konta succumbs to injury, retires from tennis aged 30

By Tobi Awodipe
02 December 2021   |   3:10 am
Great Britain’s Johanna Konta has retired from tennis at the ‘young’ age of 30, saying she has lost the energy to compete at the highest level.

Britain’s Johanna Konta (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE

Great Britain’s Johanna Konta has retired from tennis at the ‘young’ age of 30, saying she has lost the energy to compete at the highest level.

The former British number one and world number four made the announcement on social media after struggling with injury in recent times, as well as dealing with heart palpitations.

Saying she was ‘incredibly grateful for the career that it turned out to be,’ the British star gave added reasons behind her retirement, mostly due to injuries, which she said were consuming her life.

“I wanted to sit with my feelings and emotions and give myself time in coming to the decision. That process has also given me some peace with it because by no means does my retiring mean that I don’t like the sport anymore or that I can’t see myself playing anymore.

“Even sitting here, I miss playing. I miss that life because it’s the only life I’ve known since I have memory. So it’s interesting detangling yourself from something that you’ve just been attached to for so long. It’s just about putting my emotional, mental, physical well-being in the position to put that energy and work in to be able to do that.”

Born in Australia to Hungarian parents, Konta moved to Europe to pursue her tennis career as a teenager, settling with her family in Eastbourne and becoming a British citizen in 2012. A relatively late developer, Konta’s emergence at the top of the game began in 2015, and the following year she reached her first grand slam semifinal at the Australian Open and climbed into the top 10.

Her best season was in 2017, when she became the first British player since Virginia Wade to make the semifinals at Wimbledon, won the biggest of her four career titles at the Miami Open and peaked at fourth in the rankings.

She slipped down the rankings in 2018 but was resurgent the following year, making another grand slam semifinal at the French Open, as well as quarterfinals at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.

This year, she added a fourth WTA title to her career collection at the Viking Open Nottingham.

However, a positive COVID-19 result forced her to miss Wimbledon and she has played just 18 matches in 2021.

She expanded further on the mentality necessary to be a top player, and that she simply does not have that mindset anymore: “It’s that link of being able to convince yourself to be in pain, I just ran out of steam for it.”

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