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Konta ready for US Open run

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 29-08-2016


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Johanna Konta hopes to lean on her Olympic Games experience at the US Open in New York, which starts on Monday. 

British No 1 Konta has enjoyed a successful 2016 campaign, winning her first title in Stanford last month and moving up to No 14 in the world.

She failed to make it past the second round in Rio but says just being at the Olympics, and being recognised by fellow athletes, has made her realise she is no longer an unknown quantity.

That has just added to her hunger for more success as she returns to Flushing Meadows, where she made a run through to the last 16 in 2015.

Ahead of her opening clash with Bethanie Mattek-Sands on Monday, Konta said: "I was well prepared for the Olympics in the sense that everyone told me it was nothing like anything you've experienced before and it was just that.

"It was very strange going there and incredibly strange leaving because you just get immersed in this bubble of sport and competing.

"There are so many competitive vibes there that it was quite shocking to the system. To be surrounded by so many athletes - I was definitely having withdrawal symptoms when I left and still was in Cincinnati.

"[Golfer] Justin [Rose] said to me, 'you've been having such a good year' and I thought, 'my God, he knows who I am!' I had a couple of those moments, surprised that people know the sport I play to begin with.

"I was definitely one of the more social ones, I made an effort to sit down with other athletes, I didn't just stick to our group. We were sitting with the boxers, the rugby players, with the hockey players.

"I tried to learn as much as I could about the other sports because going in there I really didn't have any idea about them I'm ashamed to say."

Mattek-Sands and mixed doubles partner Jack Sock beat Konta and Jamie Murray in the first round, but the Briton will feel far more at home playing singles than her opponent, who is one of the world's leading doubles exponents and went on to claim gold in Rio.

"We hadn't played each other ever and now we are playing each other twice in three weeks," Konta said.

"She is playing very well, she has an incredible amount of experience, she is coming off the back of something that is incredibly inspirational and life changing.

"I think it's no secret that a lot of American players play better here. I'm expecting a very inspired Bethanie and I will do my best."

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