In a statement published on Twitter, the star, who quickly rose through the ranks to be No.4 in the world, stated that she was “grateful” that she had “lived her dreams” despite the frustrating setbacks she faced towards the end of her career. It was in 2016 that cracks first started to show in regards to the athletes health, as heart palpitations caused her severe discomfort. Despite recurring heart troubles, the star powered on, until August of this year when she tested positive for Covid and a rare abdominal injury that left the star “in shock”.
Within her retirement statement, Konta focused on the positives of her career, saying: “My playing career has come to an end, and I am so incredibly grateful for the career that it turned out to be.
“All the evidence pointed towards me not ‘making it’ in this profession. However my luck materialised in the people that came into my life and impacted my existence in ways that transcended tennis.
“I am so incredibly grateful for those people. You know who you are.
“Through my own resilience and through the guidance of others, I got to live my dreams. I got to become what I wanted and said as a child. How incredibly fortunate I count myself to be. How grateful I am.”
Her retirement comes ahead of the Australian Open, where Konta would have had to compete to qualify, but the star detailed how she now regularly suffers from “heart palpitations” and feeling “light headed”, disrupting her ability to make it through a single game.
Just 10 minutes into a match against Marie Bouzkova back in 2019, Konta needed medical assistance. Looking flushed, breathing heavily and unable to cope with the extreme humidity of Kentucky, the star had to be checked over in order to make sure she was fit to play.
Addressing these health issues after, the star revealed that this was not the first time she had experienced such symptoms: “I sometimes have heart palpitations. Basically my heart rate just shoots up for no reason.
“It makes me a bit light-headed. I just needed to see the doctor and the physio to see where it was at. It was very, very high.
“The first time it happened was in Birmingham in 2017; the second time was in Beijing 2018, actually in the evening match that day; the third time was three months ago, when I was doing my practice block on the clay at home in London.
“So I wouldn’t say that there’s a massive common denominator. It’s been under stressful situations, it’s been under actual no-stress situations.”
Due to the sporadic nature of her symptoms, the star brushed off warning signs admitting that the condition is “not ideal,” but that she wasn’t worried.
According to the NHS, heart palpitations are heartbeats that suddenly become more noticeable. Individuals may feel like their heart is pounding, fluttering or beating irregularly often for a few seconds or minutes.
Although at the time they may seem alarming, the NHS explains that heart palpitations are usually harmless and not a sign of a serious problem, but they can be caused by certain triggers.
“There was also a period there where I had to work through my own feelings of injustice at all of it, like: ‘Why now?’ sort of feeling. I needed a bit of space and a bit of licking my wounds.”
Although remaining hesitant and unsure when asked if she regretted not taking the opportunity to have a Covid vaccination, the star said that she was a positive person, and wanted to keep focused on all the good things that she does have in her life.
With a new variant of Covid present in the UK, symptoms that may indicate you have the Omicron variant include:
- Mild muscle aches
- Extreme tiredness
- Scratchy throat
- Dry cough.
Although anyone with any sort of symptoms of Covid, is being advised to self-isolate immediately and get a PCR test as soon as possible, whether or not they have received one or two vaccinations.