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May 18, 2017

Johanna Konta

Rome, Italy


6-1, 3-6, 6-1

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. How do you feel about your match with Venus? Seemed a pretty good match. Just got away from you at the end?
JOHANNA KONTA: I felt that -- I think I definitely kept improving, as well. I think with each match that I have played, I think I am playing better and better.

I think what she did better than me, she played a more consistent, high-level match. I think my level kind of dipped in and out; whereas she was able to maintain it. And therefore, if you drop your level a little bit against players like Venus, it makes your job very, very hard.

Q. I think you're 22 and 4 on hard this year and 3 and 4 on clay. So what's making the difference, you think, between the two surfaces?
JOHANNA KONTA: Well, I have played 26 matches on the hard and 7 matches on the clay. I think that itself also explains a lot. I think, like I said, I'm actually quite pleased with the improvements that I have made with each match.

I do feel like I'm getting better. Whether that's showing in results or how it looks from the outside, I don't know, but in terms of my communication with my team and my feedback from my team and myself, we feel that I am making the right headway.

Q. What are you going to do now? Go home before Paris?
JOHANNA KONTA: Yeah. No, I will head home for a few days and then on to Paris.

Q. You are pretty much going to France with the same amount of matches 12 months on, maybe one more for the win in Fed Cup. What do you feel are the improvements and what do you think are the things you still find really hard to master?
JOHANNA KONTA: I don't think there is anything necessarily I'm finding super hard. It's obviously still the same game, still the same lines. It's not necessarily even sliding. I think it's more just having that good level of trust in my ability on the surface. Good level of trust in my physical ability, as well.

I think that also comes with time. I think, although the -- I think I have played actually more matches this year than last year.

Q. (Comment off mic.)
JOHANNA KONTA: Yeah, but I think last year Madrid, like I didn't finish the match there. I do think in general I have had more time on the surface, especially with length of matches, even, I think.

And also, I have played a lot of the good players on this surface. Obviously I played Laura in Madrid who had won Stuttgart the week before. She's played a lot on the surface. This week I got to play Yulia who is very good on the clay, and Venus, who is Venus.

Overall, I think it's a time thing, but I'm looking forward to Paris, looking forward to giving it a go there, to really trying to be there for as long as possible. And if it happens, it happens. If it doesn't, then I will try next year.

Q. It might have looked as if you were feeling the heat at the changeovers. Is that right?
JOHANNA KONTA: Today? No, it was actually a lot cooler than on Tuesday when I played my singles. Was I looking a little red?

Q. Yes.

Q. Going to the French Open, what would you consider a successful tournament there other than the title, of course? Because people might not see you as a contender. What would you see as a good tournament there?
JOHANNA KONTA: As long as I keep growing, I think -- I have said actually a few times now, a lot of the work I get to do on this surface actually does transfer over into my game onto the hard and even onto the grass. I think as long as I keep growing in that, as long as I feel like I'm making those improvements, that's the best I can do.

Q. Couple of issue questions for you.

Q. Your friend and mine, Nastase, is now saying that he's written to the people who he had become involved in unfortunate events with to apologize. So I just wanted to see if you had any information, that anything had arrived?
JOHANNA KONTA: No, I have not. But like I said, I'm keen to just move on from Fed Cup.

Q. Playing Birmingham. Today's announcement, Maria has a wildcard in Birmingham. Any response to that decision from the LTA?
JOHANNA KONTA: No response. I'm again -- players are not part of the decision-making. I was not a part of this one, and the best I can do is focus on myself and then focus on the tournaments and the matches I will be playing on the grass.

Q. You tell us you come here on your vacations.
JOHANNA KONTA: Yeah. Well, I have the last couple, yeah.

Q. Are you making a hasty exit now, or...
JOHANNA KONTA: Well, I'm not going to be vacationing here right now in the middle of the season, if that's what you're asking.

Q. Not even for a day or something like that?
JOHANNA KONTA: I need to check that I've got my laundry bag. So if it means I have to wait for my laundry to come back tomorrow, we may be here a few hours, but otherwise, I am keen to get home, as well.

Q. And as you are in Rome and as you do enjoy a gelato or two, now that you're in peak training, do you indulge in a gelato even now?
JOHANNA KONTA: 100%. Many. Not one (smiling). Actually, I don't know if you tried the gelato in the restaurant here. It's very good. They actually use a different type of milk, so it actually makes the creamy ones, so like the hazelnut, it's really light. It's really nice.

Q. What is the difference then between ice cream and gelato?
JOHANNA KONTA: Well, gelato is mainly made with milk, whereas ice cream is made with cream. And also the way they freeze it, and the way it's -- I think they freeze ice cream more with actual ice and water, whereas gelato with temperature and just like they swirl it. It's different. Something -- I think that's right.

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