Harriet Dart scored a winning hat-trick at Rothesay International Eastbourne on Wednesday and revealed that spaghetti marinara was the secret to her success.
The world number 103 started the day by finishing her second-round match with 10th seed Jil Teichmann and won a close decision on Court Four to triumph 7-6 (7) 4-6 6-3.
After a short break, the home favorite was back in action and on Court Two, where she got the better of Ukrainian Marta Kostyuk 6-4, 2-6, 6-4.
That made her the first British player to reach the round of 16 of the Devonshire Park event in five years and she concluded a busy day by teaming up with Heather Watson, who reached the singles semi-finals here in 2017, to defeat American duo Desirae Krawczyk and Shelby Rogers 7-5 6-4.
While the first and third games of the day only needed to be completed after being suspended due to poor light the previous nights, Dart spent more than three hours on the court.
Your reward after a triple win? A trip to your lucky Italian restaurant.
“I’m happy to leave this place before dark, so that’s definitely very positive,” admitted the British number two.
” It just sounds really silly, but I do everything pretty much the same. So I’m just going to get food from Pomodoro’s, which is a great Italian restaurant that I’m sure you all know. Having the same thing. I know it sucks, but it works.”
Asked about the winning formula. Dart revealed: “The spaghetti marinara. It’s good.”
Dart’s success will put her in the top 100 and ensured there was home representation at the women’s event after Katie Boulter and Jodie Burrage saw their good runs come to an end.
British number four Boulter pushed two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova all the way, but lost 5-7, 6-0, 7-5.
The 25-year-old managed five straight games to secure her debut, but the former world number two rose to the next level and even two stoppages due to medical emergencies in the crowd failed to bring down the Czech who triumphed in two hours and 23 minutes.
Burrage, fresh off his career-best move over Paula Badosa on Tuesday, couldn’t keep up with Beatriz Haddad Maia in good form in the third game on center court.
Haddad Maia managed to break the home player in the fourth serve game and showed why he had won events in Nottingham and Birmingham in the last fortnight.
The world number 169 Burrage was next able to enter the board in the third game of the second set and, despite some excellent backhand winners, suffered a 6-1 6-2 defeat in just over an hour.
Camila Giorgi took a beautiful 7-5, 6-3 victory over fifth-seeded and former Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza in the round of 16 and reigning champion Jelena Ostapenko stayed on course to retain her WTA 500 title afterwards. that opponent Madison Keys was forced to retire.
On the men’s side of the draw, Cameron Norrie beat Brandon Nakashima 6-4 6-2 earlier in the day for his first win on grass this summer, while British prospect Jack Draper stunned world number 15 Diego Schwartzman.
Norrie suffered a shocking exit from the Queen’s Club last week but produced a successful showing against his American opponent, which he broke on three separate occasions.
An all-British quarter-final match between the world number 12 and Dan Evans was denied after the latter lost 7-6 (2) 6-4 to Maxime Cressy.
Draper scored a memorable center court victory after a hard-fought 7-5 7-6 (3) victory over Schwartzman.
In a round of 16 clash that lasted two hours and four minutes, British number four Draper bested the Argentinian and showed his patience in the big points with six aces helping his cause.
Next up for Draper in the round of 16 could be a second encounter of the summer with Ryan Peniston, who saw his match with Pedro Martinez suspended 7-6 (8) 3-6 3-2 shortly after 8:30 pm in Eastbourne.
“All Brits I have a really good relationship with Cam, Dan, Andy (Murray) and Ryan too. We train together daily,” Draper insisted.
“I think this is one thing where British tennis is changing. We want to push each other to the top 100 and I’m really happy for Ryan.
“He’s having some amazing weeks. I hope to play with him tomorrow. Three Brits in the rooms would be a good effort.”
Defending champion Alex De Minaur also progressed on Wednesday, but second seed Jannik Sinner was knocked out by Tommy Paul at the ATP 250 event.
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