Harriet Dart overcomes doubles snub to join Konta in Wimbledon third round

• World No 182 Dart beats Beatriz Haddad Maia 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-1
• Dart was dropped as Jay Clarke’s mixed doubles partner by text

Harriet Dart is doing just fine on her own. The 22-year-old Londoner does not have to linger on the irritation of being ditched as Jay Clarke’s mixed doubles partner after a cathartic 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-1 win over Beatriz Haddad Maia continued her fine run in the women’s singles and set up a third-round match with Ashleigh Barty, the French Open champion and world No 1.

Dart had every right to be put out after Clarke informed her by text that he was linking up with Cori Gauff, the 15-year-old American prodigy, but the world No 182 did not want to talk about being snubbed by her fellow British youngster after beating Haddad Maia, a Brazilian qualifier who had reached the second round after stunning the 2017 Wimbledon champion, Garbiñe Muguruza.

“I’d really just like to talk about my match today,” she said. “I think that’s in the past. I’ve just got to look forward. I’m just concentrating on my singles.”

Looking forward means preparing for Barty, who looked imperious in her 6-1, 6-3 victory over Alison Van Uytvanck. “I have nothing to lose,” Dart said. “I actually met her a few weeks ago at an LTA schools visit. Lovely girl, great champion. She won the French Open and she won Birmingham. It’s an exciting match for me, just another great opportunity to get out there and do the best that I can.”

The odds will be heavily stacked against Dart when she plays the Australian. She had never made it past the first round of a singles event at a grand slam before and had heavy strapping applied to her left ankle after the opening set. “It was due to the fall I had in my first-round match,” she said. “We’re just managing it really well, so that’s about it.”

Johanna Konta set up a match with Sloane Stephens after a straight-sets victory over Katerina Siniakova.
Johanna Konta set up a match with Sloane Stephens after a straight-sets victory over Katerina Siniakova. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian

The British No 1, Johanna Konta, continued her impressive form as she beat Katerina Siniakova of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-4 to reach the third round. Konta, the No 19 seed, served beautifully and did not face a single break point as she set up a clash with the USA’s Sloane Stephens.

In front of a packed crowd on Centre Court, Konta took the attack to world No 38 Siniakova, who won the doubles title here last year, and an early break settled any nerves as she seized the first set in 32 minutes. Konta, a semi-finalist at the French Open last month, showed nice touch, clever use of angles and hit seven aces, including two in the final game.

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Konta beat Stephens at the French Open and has won all three of their meetings, all of them coming this year. “I think records don’t necessarily mean a lot when you step out on to the court,” she said. “Sloane is one of the best players in the world. She’s a grand slam champion, another grand slam finalist. She’s an incredibly good player. For me to have won our three encounters so far, there’s very little in that.”


Jacob Steinberg and Simon Cambers at Wimbledon

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