Johanna Konta: Chasing Her Dream And Defending The Women’s Game
Chasing after her dream of one day becoming world No.1, Johanna Konta enters the clay-court swing full of confidence.
The British world No.7 recently won the biggest title of her career so far by triumphing at the Miami Open, a Premier Mandatory event. At the tournament she produced wins over Simona Halep, Venus Williams and Caroline Wozniacki. It was Konta‘s second title of the season after downing Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 6-4, in the final at the Sydney Open at the start of the year.
Konta has so far played 26 main draw matches on the tour this season, winning 22 of those. The performance underlines her place in the world’s top-10, but it is the top spot that is the main priority for the Brit.
“My dream has always to be number one in the world and to win titles and to really be at the top of the game.” Konta told BBC Breakfast.
“I’m doing everything in my power to make it come true.”
Currently 3005 points adrift from the world No.1 position, the 25-year-old has a long way to go to achieve her dream. Nevertheless, with Serena Williams taking a hiatus from the sport due to pregnancy, the women’s game has opened up. Furthermore, consistency continues to be a problem for the majority of the top players on the WTA Tour.
“I need to keep focusing on my work because I know that will bring the best out of me.” Konta explained.
Don’t compare me to Andy Murray
Despite the roller-coaster performances of players such as Halep and Angelique Kerber, Konta has defended the current state of the women’s game. Equal prize money has existed in every grand slam tournament since 2007. Still, there are some critics. According to the BBC 395 million people watched WTA Premier events and finals on TV and digital in 2015, compared with 973 million for ATP events.
“Women’s tennis has become, there’s become, so much more depth in our game and I do believe it’s becoming more and more exciting.” Konta insisted when asked about the subject.
Addressing the differences between the men and women, Konta’s approach is a more simplistic one. Stating she works just as hard as her male counterparts, the world No.7 believes women should never be compared to men.
“I also think it’s important to not compare us to the men in terms of our tennis.” She said.
“We are different, we’re not built the same way, but we sure as hell work exactly the same, just as hard and commit our lives to our sport.”
With such diplomacy in her words, Konta has some of the key characteristics to be a ideal world No.1 for women’s tennis. She engages well with the media and fans, works hard and avoids controversy. The one thing alluding her, like many others, is consistency. If she can achieve this, the sky’s the limit for the Australian-born Brit.
Konta’s 2017 so far
Shenzhen – SF
Sydney – Champion
Australian Open – QF
Fed Cup – win-loss of 4-1 (including doubles)
Indian Wells – R3
Miami – Champion
— BBC Breakfast (@BBCBreakfast) 20 April 2017