MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Johanna Konta is free from injury, ready to put a terrible second half to 2017 behind her and with Andy Murray recuperating from hip surgery, happy to shoulder the burden of British tennis fans at the Australian Open.
The 26-year-old enters the tournament, historically the grand slam where she has done best, also with a new coach in Michael Joyce, who worked with Maria Sharapova from 2004-11 and helped the Russian to the world’s top ranking.
Konta - Reporters - Saturday - Joyce - Round
“He is very relaxed,” Konta told reporters on Saturday of working with Joyce as she prepares for a first round clash with Madison Brengle of the United States.
“He was a player, so he comes, with a lot of things, from the perspective of when he played as well.
Lot - Challenges - Difficulties - Kind - Pre-tournament
“I think he can empathize a lot with some of the challenges and difficulties you face kind of pre-tournament, or in matches, or in practice, even in training, how you’re feeling.
“He also coaches with a lot of feel, a lot of kind of intuition, which I think so far I’m really enjoying spending time with.”
Sydney-born - Briton - Move - Joyce - End
The Sydney-born Briton’s move to appoint Joyce came after a poor end to 2017 when after she lost to Venus Williams in the semi-finals at Wimbledon, she won just two more matches, in Cincinnati, for the rest of the year.
Her struggles were exacerbated by a foot injury and while she managed to end her losing streak...
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