NOTTINGHAM, June 14, 2018
British interests will be well-represented on quarterfinals Friday at Nottingham’s Nature Valley Open, with Johanna Konta, Katie Boulter, Dan Evans and James Ward all in action at the Nottingham Tennis Centre.
In the WTA International event, British No.1 Konta is set to face Dalila Jakupovic of Slovenia third on Centre Court after 21-year-old wild card Boulter takes on top seed Ashleigh Barty in her first WTA quarterfinal.
The British No. 4 from Leicestershire beat former World No. 4 Sam Stosur 7-6(6), 6-1 on Thursday afternoon. Boulter saved a set point and edged the first-set tie-break, before winning five games in a row to close out the match in one hour and 18 minutes.
The World No. 156, who has collected two ITF Pro Circuit titles so far in 2018, continued her fine form on grass, having made the last eight at the Surbiton Trophy last week and picking up her first WTA main draw win on Tuesday at the Nottingham Tennis Centre.
On her triumph over the 2011 US Open champion, Boulter said: “It’s really exciting. It’s a huge step for me. She’s a Grand Slam winner, and it’s the first one of those that I’ve beaten. It was a really quick second set but I dug in really deep in the first. I thought I held my nerve really well and found a way to win.
“It’s done a world of good for me, playing in these matches, in this environment. I don’t get the opportunity that often, so I think I’ve used it really well and I’m happy where I’m at right now.”
Also fighting for a place in Saturday’s semis will be defending champion Donna Vekic, who will play Germany’s Mona Barthel, and third-seed World No. 18 Naomi Osaka, who meets No. 5 seed Mihaela Buzarnescu of Romania.
ATP Challenger quarterfinals are set
Meanwhile in the €127,000 ATP Challenger event, Daniel Evans will begin proceedings on Court 1 against Canadian qualifier Brayden Schnur, followed by Ward’s clash with fourth seed Ilya Ivashka.
No. 2 seed Alex de Minaur of Australia will face the tournament’s No. 6 Peter Polansky and Spaniard Marcel Granollers will take on fifth favourite Ramkumar Ramanathan of India.