Konta’s parents forced into lockdown

Published by PA

Johanna Konta in action at Australian Open 2016; Getty Images

While British No.1 Johanna Konta was thrilling tennis fans with her brilliant run in the Australian Open, her parents were forced into hiding in the UK.

Konta beat Venus Williams and Ekaterina Makarova on her way to the semifinals of the year’s first Grand Slam before succumbing to eventual champion Angelique Kerber.

Konta was the first British woman to make the last four in singles at a slam since Jo Durie in 1983 and her success caused a sensation back home.

In an interview on The Jonathan Ross Show, Konta said she was happy not be in the spotlight in the UK.

“It did help that I was halfway around the world and there is an 11-hour time difference. I also stay quite removed from social media.

“I didn’t really want to know what was going on and my parents had a bit of a hard time, they had their doorbell ringing with journalists every two hours so they closed the curtains, turned all the lights off and pretended they weren’t home.

“So it was definitely different here.”

Konta’s ranking has rocketed to No.27 in the world and she is on target to be seeded at Wimbledon, where there will be no hiding from the glare.

But the 24-year-old is confident she will not feel extra pressure or scrutiny.

“Knowing myself as well as I do as of now, I’d like to think (I won’t).

“I play tennis because I love it as a sport, I love competing, I think it’s the best job.

“I feel very fortunate to be doing it so, in terms of external things taking my attention away from it, I wouldn’t think so.”

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