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Sport: Johanna Konta opens up on 'heart palpitations' as Brit mulls over skipping Australian Open

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Johanna Konta's participation in the first Grand Slam event of the new season has been cast into doubt after the revelation of a potentially major medical issue. The Briton will be hoping she can play at the Australian Open in January after a frustrating 2021 season in which she could only play in one of the four major tournaments on the calendar.

An abdominal issue forced her to miss the competition in Melbourne this year, before she was able to compete at the French Open.

However, her Roland Garros challenge ended in the first round as she lost to Sorana Cirstea, and that would prove to be her only Grand Slam appearance of the year.

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A positive Covid-19 test scuppered her Wimbledon plans and also forced her to miss out on the chance to represent Team GB at the Tokyo Olympics.

And the 30-year-old was just hours away from her opening match at the US Open when she announced she had pulled out due to a thigh problem.

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Johanna Konta's 'heart palpitations' may stop her from competing at the Australian Open © GETTY Johanna Konta's 'heart palpitations' may stop her from competing at the Australian Open

On top of those muscular issues she has had to contend with, Konta is also wary that an ongoing heart issue has flared up again recently.

"I have heart palpitations sometimes. Basically, my heartbeat quickens for no reason. I feel a little dizzy," she told Tennis Actu TV.

"The first time this happened was in Birmingham in 2017 - the second time was in Beijing in 2018.

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"The third time was three months ago when I was doing my training block on clay at my home in London.

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"So I wouldn't say that there is a massive common denominator. There have been stressful situations and stress-free situations."

Her lack of participation in big tournaments has seen Konta tumble to 112th in the WTA rankings, meaning she would most likely have to play in the qualifying rounds to reach the main draw at the Australian Open.

But she is yet to decide if she will make the trip Down Under, despite the December 6 registration deadline looming.

Johanna Konta's win at the Viking Open in Nottingham was the highlight of her injury-hit 2021 season © GETTY Johanna Konta's win at the Viking Open in Nottingham was the highlight of her injury-hit 2021 season

While admitting it has been tough to deal with a season so disrupted by injury and illness, Konta insists she is remaining upbeat about her future.

"It was very difficult," the former world number four admitted. "There was nothing good and nothing fun about having Covid and having to miss Wimbledon and the Olympics. There is no getting around that.

"However, I consider myself a happy, positive and pragmatic person, and I like to take a step back and look at the good things that I have in my life.

"And, at the end of the day, I looked at my life and everything is fine."

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