The 22-year-old Ana Konjuh has played only nine matches after the US Open 2017, struggling with an elbow injury that has ruined her career in the last couple of years. The Dubrovnik native had been one of the most promising players born around 1997, finishing inside the top-100 in 2014 after just turning 17 and conquering the first WTA title in Nottingham next June.
In 2016, Ana was the quarter-finalist at the US Open, entering the top-50 and hoping for more of the same in the upcoming season. The hard-hitting Croat opened the 2017 season with the final in Auckland, followed by the quarter-final run in Dubai.
She scored eight wins on her favorite grass and cracked the top-20 at the end of July before experiencing elbow issues that sidelined her after the US Open. Konjuh underwent surgery in September and had to go with another one next March, unable to play injury-free and get back into the winning rhythm.
Her ranking went down rapidly, entering Roland Garros from outside the top-100 and taking only one game against Carla Suarez Navarro before failing to make an impression in Eastbourne and Wimbledon, barely standing in the top-400.
To make things even worse, Ana wasn't sure what to do with her right elbow, practicing with no problems but starting to feel the pain in competitive matches after a couple of games. Eager to give a shot in the season behind us, the Croat lost all three matches in St.
Petersburg, Trnava and Budapest, feeling a sharp pain in her elbow again and deciding to undergo the fourth surgery, desperately trying to extend her career and compete with no pain. After the summer break, Ana started to work at the gym, hit light sessions on the court and improve her physical condition with each month, hoping to step on the court as soon as possible once the coronavirus allows the season to restart.
In her latest interview, Konjuh said that Roger Federer is her favorite player and the GOAT ahead of Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, praising the Spaniard and the Serb as well but still keeping the Swiss maestro in front of them.
"Roger Federer is my favorite player and for me, he is the greatest of all time. Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray are great but Roger is in front of them in my opinion, he has the crowd by his side and manages to put all the pieces together, both off and on the court.
I know how tough that is and he deserves full credit for that. Roger is a superstar and everyone knows about him. Nadal and Djokovic have done more than him in certain areas but, overall, I still put Roger above them."