Embarrassing yourself! Let’s bet £50k…


World No. 92 Harriet Dart got extremely annoyed with chair umpire Kelly Rask during her Nottingham first-round match to the point where she told the chair umpire that she was “embarrassing” herself and also offered to bet £50k that she made the wrong call.

In Nottingham, fans had a chance to watch an all-British match when Dart and world No. 30 Katie Boulter met. While Dart managed to win a very tight first set via a tie-break, she wasn’t particularly happy with how umpires were doing their job. 

But Dart’s frustration escalated in the second set, after a Boulter ball that was initially called out by a line umpire got overturned by chair umpire Rask. Dart instantly lost her cool and started arguing that the ball was so out that it was “so embarrassing” to overrule that call. 

“The ball is so far out, this is embarrassing, you’re embarrassing yourself. You should be embarrassed,” Dart shouted at Rask, via Yahoo! Sport.

After the point was replayed and Boulter won it, Dart took a ball in her hand and placed it on the court. 

“It was here, no joke, everyone here knows it,” Dart said.

Harriet Dart
Harriet Dart© Getty Images Sport – Nathan Stirk

 

That’s when umpire Rask appeared to have enough of Dart’s antics, telling the British tennis player: “Harriet, stop now or you’re going to get a code (violation), I’ve had enough now. That’s it.”

Dart wanted to bet with umpire Rask

Chair umpire Rask threatening Dart with a code violation didn’t calm down the 27-year-old British tennis player but only made her more annoyed and frustrated. That’s when Dart requested to see referee Jane Harvey. 

Also, Dart was so convinced that she was right about the call that started everything that she was willing to bet £50k. 

“I’ve got a reason to call the referee, because of the calling, I’d like them to watch. If we watch that back I can promise you, I would back £50,000 that ball is out, I’d shake your hand now. It’s a joke how far that was out,” Dart told Rask.

“I’ve got a reason to call the referee, because of the calling, I’d like them to watch. If we watch that back I can promise you, I would back £50,000 that ball is out, I’d shake your hand now. It’s a joke how far that was out.”

When referee Harvey got to the court, Dart said Rask “threatened” her with a code violation and also argued how all tournaments simply must switch to electronic line calling. 

“To be threatened by someone for saying that a call was embarrassing is a bit of a joke,” Dart said.

“It makes sense that we need to move to electronic line calling for everywhere, for everyone’s sakes, there’s too many disruptions, not just for me but for both of us. A few points here or there can really totally change a match.”

Harriet Dart
Harriet Dart© Getty Images Sport – Nathan Stirk

 

What Dart said about Rask after losing the match?

After the incident, Dart went on to lose in three sets after Boulter completed a 6-7 (5) 6-4 7-5 win. 

After winning the first set, Dart dropped her serve in the opening game of the second set. In the remainder of the set, Dart had a break point in the fourth game but didn’t convert it as Boulter went on to force a decider.

When the third set started, Dart got broken in the third game but managed to get the break back in the sixth game and tie the decider to three games apiece. But a couple of games later, Dart again got broken in the 11th game as Boulter opened a 6-5 lead before serving out for the match in the following game.

Afterward, Dart stuck to her belief that umpire Rask was probably “embarrassed” by her decision. 

“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. It is really challenging.

“When there are a few calls that go against you and they are tight you then have to alter how you play because you are afraid the ball is going to be called out.

“I think for me today there were a lot of balls, especially ones that she overruled on some important points.”

Harriet Dart
Harriet Dart© Getty Images Sport – Nathan Stirk

 

Meanwhile, Dart and Boulter have a good relationship and they have been Billie Jean King Cup colleagues for several years now. 

But none of Dart’s frustrations were aimed at Boulter, who after the match acknowledged there were “some tough calls” and the best for her was not to get involved.



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