Birmingham | Dart falls as Krejcikova, Putintseva, Shnaider and Dolehide advance to Last 8

Harriet Dart, the last Brit standing at the Rothesay Classic in Birmingham, missed out on a quarter-final slot after losing in straight sets to Barbora Krejcikova, the No 2 seed, on Thursday, while Yulia Putintseva, Diana Shnaider and lucky loser Caroline Dolehide all progressed to the Last 8.

The British No 2 tried to fight her way back from a 1-5 deficit in the second set, winning 3 games on the trot, but eventually was stopped by Krejcikova, the No 2 seed from the Czech Republic, finishing the match, 6-3 6-4, in just under 90 minutes.

During last year’s tournament, Dart made it to the quarter-finals here in Birmingham but the home favourite was not able to emulate her run against this year.

Despite Dart forcing the former French Open champion and World Doubles No 1, to swat away multiple break points in the opening game, the precision game of Krejcikova began to dictate, with the Czech breaking serve in the 6th game to claim the set-winning break.

A double-fault in the opening game of the second set cost Dart another break, and the British No 2 was staring at a quick defeat when Krejcikova opened up a 5-1 lead after attaining a cushioning double-break, but the British No 2 clung on grimly, retrieving one of the breaks.

Krejcikova, the World No 25 who last year reached the final on her debut here, wasn’t going to make the same mistake twice, and sealed the contest with a critical hold to sail into the quarter-finals after an hour and 27 minutes.

In the quarter-finals, Krejcikova will take on Anastasia Potapova, the No 7 seed from Russia.


Diana Shnaider had a tight 2-set battle with Marie Bouzkova but prevailed at the Edgbaston Priory Club on Day 4

© Cameron Smith/Getty Images for LTA

Meanwhile, following Kazah Putintseva’s 6-3 6-0 trouncing of Anhelina Kalinina from Ukraine, Diane Shnaider upset 8th seed Marie Bouzkova from Czech Republic, 7-6(5) 6-3.

Putintseva is currently ranked 41, and has a composed 25-15 match record this season.

Ranked 49, Snaider continued her run of good form on the grass in her maiden appearance at the Edgbaston Priory Club.

Despite several unforced errors from the 20-year old Russian paving the way for the 2022 Prague Open champion Bouzkova to race out to a double break, Snaider soon moved up the gears to replace a 0-4 deficit with a 5-4 advantage lead.

An immediate response from the Czech to get back on even terms signalled that neither was ready to concede as they sped towards a tiebreak.

Snaider again responded from a mini-break behind, winning 3 consecutive points to eventually secure the set.

In stark contrast to the opening minutes of the match, Snaider won 3 consecutive games to edge ahead in the decider, before the 8th seed battled back to retrieve one of the service breaks against her.

Snaider, though, quickly rebuilt her advantage to seal one of the 3 remaining quarter-final places in just short of two hours of play.

It is the first grass-court quarter-final of Shnaider’s career at the Rothesay Classic as she levelled her head-to-head with Bouzkova at one win apiece.


Lucky loser Caroline Dolehide advanced to the quarters when 5th seed Elise Mertens retired with a hip injury at the Rothesay Classic in Birmingham on Thursday

© Paul Harding/Getty Images for LTA

Elsewhere, lucky loser Caroline Dolehide from the USA grabbed the final quarter-final slot after the 5th seed Elise Mertens from Belgium retired from their match due to a hip injury.

In the Doubles, Britain’s Heather Watson withdrew from the doubles quarter-final due to injury alongside Greet Minnen, gifting beneficiaries Miyu Kato & Zhang Shuai a place in the semi-finals.




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