Wimbledon: Dart 'has nothing to lose' against Barty
PUBLISHED: 18:14 04 July 2019 | UPDATED: 18:14 04 July 2019
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Harriet Dart is ready and eager to take on the cream of the crop at Wimbledon after she set up a third-round clash with number one seed Ashleigh Barty with a 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 6-1 win over Beatriz Haddad Maia.
Dart, who had won what was her first Grand Slam match against Christina McHale in round one, duly rode the wave of home support and adrenaline all the way to the last 32.
And the 22-year-old believes that the pressure lies solely on the shoulders of the French Open champion ahead of the match-up.
"I have nothing to lose," she said.
"It's super exciting, a great opportunity for me. I actually met her a few weeks ago at an LTA schools visit. Lovely girl, great champion.
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"It's an exciting match for me. Just another great opportunity to get out there and do the best that I can."
The Hampstead native made the perfect start to life on Court 12, immediately breaking her Brazilian opponent in the first game of the match and making a statement of intent.
She dug in to take the first set on a tie-break, but a visit from the trainer to tend to ankle strappings halted her progress in the second as Haddad Maia levelled.
But Dart refused to let it daunt her, rising up in the decider as her opponent faded to send the home crowd wild.
"I think I'm just learning from all these experiences that I'm having this year," she continued.
"Everything is still pretty new for me. This is my second Wimbledon, I'm still finding my feet.
"I'm definitely proving that my tennis is definitely right up there with the level. I'm just doing the best that I can. I'm just really excited to play my next match."