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Boulter beats Dart in marathon Nottingham match

Katie Boulter celebrates her win
Katie Boulter is ranked 30th in the world [Getty Images]

Defending champion Katie Boulter edged out Harriet Dart in a marathon all-British tie to reach the second round of the Nottingham Open.

Opening her grass-court season, third seed Boulter won 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 7-5 in a contest lasting three hours and 13 minutes.

But the enthralling match was tainted as a frustrated Dart repeatedly argued with the chair umpire over what she believed to be incorrect line calls.

Their dispute reached its height during a change of ends in the second set, after a ball from Boulter was called out but overruled by umpire Kelly Rask.

In response, Dart offered a £50,000 bet that the ball in question was out.

"The ball is so far out, this is embarrassing. You're embarrassing yourself. You should be embarrassed," the 27-year-old told Rask.

After asking to speak to the tournament referee, Dart then accused Rask of "threatening" her with a code violation.

Speaking after the match, Dart said the line calling was "pretty appalling" and called for technology to be used across the sport.

On her dispute with Rask, she said: "Give me a code violation or don't. I think she was a bit embarrassed by the situation. We are all professionals here.

"I have played so many tennis matches in my career and this one was a little bit disappointing with some of the things. I think she can also reflect on that."

British number one Boulter will play Viktorija Golubic of Switzerland or Canada's Rebecca Marino in the second round.

The 27-year-old's victory in Nottingham 12 months ago was her first WTA title.

"That was an absolute battle," Boulter, ranked 30th in the world, said of her contest with Dart.

"[Dart] is an incredible grass-court player. I tried to do the best I could because she was playing seriously good stuff.

"I would have taken a much easier win, that's for sure. I'm not sure I've seen a three hour, 13 minute grass-court match. I'm not sure that's possible."

Earlier, British number five Heather Watson progressed to the second round with a 4-6 6-0 6-4 rain-disrupted win over American Kayla Day.

Watson will next face sixth seed Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic.

Elsewhere, British duo Lily Miyazaki and Emily Appleton were both beaten in the first round.

Fellow Briton Emma Raducanu will begin her Nottingham campaign on Tuesday against Japan's Ena Shibahara, while top seed and world number 10 Ons Jabeur opens against Colombia's Camila Osorio.

In the men's Challenger event at Nottingham, second seed Dan Evans' match with Switzerland's Dominic Stricker was suspended at 6-3 4-6 because of poor light and will resume on Tuesday.

Fellow Briton Paul Jubb beat seventh seed Duje Ajdukovic 7-6 (7-1) 6-4, while Cameron Norrie is seeded top and faces Sho Shimabukuro in his opener on Tuesday.

Draper wins in Stuttgart as Murray prepares for final grass-court swing

Elsewhere, Jack Draper got his grass season off to a winning start, reaching the second round of the Stuttgart Open where he could meet fellow Briton Andy Murray.

British number two Draper defeated Austrian Sebastian Ofner 7-6 (7-4) 7-6 (7-5).

"When it came down to it, I'm glad I competed really hard and got over the line. It's good to be back on the grass," Draper, 22, said in his on-court interview.

Murray starts his Stuttgart campaign against American Marcos Giron on Tuesday.

The 37-year-old is preparing for what looks set to be his final Wimbledon, having previously said he does not plan on "playing much beyond the summer".

He will team up with brother Jamie in the men's doubles at Wimbledon in what will be their first Grand Slam appearance as a pair.

Earlier this month, Jamie Murray told BBC Sport it was "now or never" for the brothers to play together.

Wimbledon starts on 1 July.