I was at work on Wednesday morning and it popped up on my phone to say Johanna Konta has announced her retirement from tennis, stunned but as she said herself grateful and I’ve been grateful and thankful for the memories she has given us over the years.
It was a decade ago that Jo made her debut on the main WTA tour in Denmark, the Brit came through qualifying but lost to fourth seed Lucie Safarova in three sets. A decade on the Brit finishes her career with 395 wins and 243 defeats in singles.
In this time we have seen Jo climb to number four in the rankings after her run to semi-finals of Wimbledon in 2017 and win four career titles in Stanford, Sydney (City of Birth), Miami and this year in Nottingham.
Not only was Jo a semi-finalist at Wimbledon but also the Australian Open and French Open in 2016 and 2019 respectively. Jo has given us soo many great moments over the years, her win against Halep at Wimbledon in 2017 winning 6-7 7-6 6-4 and her first title win came against Venus in 2016 down in Stanford.
Jo has always played with an air of intensity in her game, as a fan you are glued to what is happening on the court and the battle ahead. In the same year she made the semi-finals at Wimbledon earlier on in the year she won her biggest career title down in Miami.
It was one of the last years at Crandon Park and Jo was the 10th seed, Miami is one of the most prestigious tournaments on the calendar and she was relentless throughout her six wins. In the final eight she played a phenomenal match from a set down to beat Simona Halep and it was followed by straight sets wins over Venus Williams and Caroline Wozniacki.
Runs like these and that Wimbledon 2017 pathway contributed to Jo deservedly debut at No.4 in the world, throughout her career they have plenty of triumphs but as with any career some tough moments. Once of which has to be Roland Garros semi-final against Vondrousova, it was one of those ‘what could’ve been’ matches.
Even in triumph or defeat what I have loved about Jo over the years is that she resets and goes again. That is what I will miss the most from watching Jo whether it is on the match court or the practice courts at Birmingham a few times is the intensity she plays with. The winning mentality she has the fearless approach is what made her a great player, on the flip side she was always so open and honest in press but stood up to questions and always hit a balance.
It has been great to watch Jo on TV, live and on the practice court over the year and I wish her well in what she does next! Thank you Jo!