Johanna Konta fit for Wimbledon after spine injury
- Author: Stacy Allen Jul 04, 2017,
Jul 04, 2017, 0:22
In the absence of American great who has 23 Grand Slam titles on her CV, and the headline-grabbing Sharapova, it's the opportunity for others to shine.
In the two years, she played - and lost - the final to Serena Williams, Safarova has been struggling to rejoin the Tour after bouts of illnesses and injuries.
But the 27-year-old has recovered far quicker than expectedand last month proved she's still a major force in the women's game with a stunning win at the Aegon Championships in Birmingham.
The 25-year-old Romanian, who has never been past the semi-finals at Wimbledon, opens her campaign against Kiwi Marina Erakovic. "It is about who is going to be the most consistent, solid and have the luck". She pulled up with ice in Birmingham after just one round on the grass, and she has a tough start with Birmingham finalist Ashleigh Barty, the always risky Mirjana Lucic-Baroni in the third round before maybe the reigning French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko before she gets there.
Kvitova soon found herself a set and a break up, though she led Larsson fight her way back into the match.
After a dream 2016 that saw her triumph at the Australian Open, U.S. Open and reach the final at the All England Club, the world No. 1 is enduring a nightmare 2017 and tumbled out of the French Open with a dismal first-round exit.
Kristina Mladenovic's column: The challenge of grass, Kvitova's return and tennis' baby boom
"But I actually practiced with her couple of times already".
Fellow Czech Karolina Pliskova closely trails Kvitova at +550 on the WTA tennis odds for Wimbledon, followed by Garbine Muguruza at +900, while Johanna Konta joins Venus Williams at +1200. The way I usually play, which involves me using my forehand a lot, maybe heavy rotation spin shots, that's something I'm not going to do on grass.
Feel exhausted yet? Here's a reminder that Williams is several months pregnant and still working out like it's nothing. "I think she misses me", she told reporters.
Konta also hit her head heavily on the court surface causing a whiplash injury that is still being assessed. Through the tournament, I felt like every round I played better and better, which is always good sign. This will be the 131st playing of the iconic tennis tournament in London.
Her touch at the net was assured as it ever was - astonishingly so given the surgeon who reattached the tendons in her fingers in a four-hour operation said she had a "very low" chance of resuming her career.