Recent News

Could Johanna Konta’s success in the French open increase women’s participation in tennis?

By June 5, 2019 No Comments

Johanna Konta reached the third semi-final of her career after an emphatic victory over seven seed Sloane Stephens in Paris.

Australian born Konta is the highest ranked British seed with the 28-year-old currently ranked 26th in the world.

Konta who has never made a grand slam final before in her career is one game away from a life-changing game which could make her the first British female to win a Grand Slam since Virginia Wade who won Wimbledon back in 1977.

With a British female not winning a Major tournament since the 70s Konta could be key in igniting a sudden increase in participation in women actively playing tennis.

For a start with a British female being in the final of a major Grand Slam, it is highly likely that there will be an increase in British viewers watching the final.

Case in point, a study on U.S Women’s Finals viewing figures discovered that a final containing American Female tennis players far outweighed the viewing figures of ones that didn’t.

 

For example, a final with an America female tennis player never dropped below 3 million viewers compared to a final with two Non-Americans only managed to exceed over 2.5 million viewers once in the last 9 years.

Using this data is can be suggested that if Konta were to make it to a final there is a possibility that more women would watch the final which could, in turn, lead to an increase in participation.

Furthermore, if you look at the Participation levels after the London Olympics you will discover that due to an increased number of people able to watch a host of different sports with British athletes succeeding in the participation levels increased.

For Instance, the Guardian Newspaper found that after the games there was an increase of 750,000 people participating in sports once a week.

In addition to the increase in overall general participation, Cycling saw an increase of over 200,000 people participating which was the biggest increase out of any sport.

During the 2012 Olympics Britain won five medals in Cycling events. It is clear to see that with a success in sport outside participation increases.


Overall if Konta does make the final and wins the first Grand Slam of her Career not only will she reap the rewards but so will the thousands of other young women who participate in the sport.