HAMPSHIRE will be cheered on by tennis star Elina Svitolina when they take on Sussex in tonight’s T20 derby at Hove.

Reece Topley’s girlfriend will be watching her first T20 match following her last-16 exit at Wimbledon on Monday.

Topley was at Wimbledon to see No 4 seed Elina’s 6-3, 7-6 defeat to French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko.

Now their schedules allow for Elina to see her beau try to continue the form that saw him take 3-23 in Hampshire’s stunning win against Glamorgan in Cardiff, when the Natwest T20 Blast began last Friday.

Topley produced the best performance of his 15-month Hampshire career at the Swalec Stadium, following a spate of injuries and surgery on his shoulder during the winter.

He met Elina at a London gym during his rehabilitation.

“We both try to support each other every way we can and she’s taken a real interest in cricket,” he said.

“I was at Wimbledon the other day and she’s coming to Hove and hopefully the Ageas Bowl on Friday.

“We’ll be looking to get the job done as we did in Cardiff. It’s too early to tell after only one game but hopefully we can have a good campaign.”

If her schedule allows, it is hoped Svitolina, who is from the Ukraine, has reason to be at T20 Finals Day on September 2.

She confused cricket with curling when she first met Topley but is learning fast.

At Wimbledon last week, she said: “I’m trying to learn more about cricket because before Reece I knew nothing.

"I even thought it was a different sport, the one with a brush, and then my friend told me it was not that one!

“I have been to a couple of cricket matches – I understood nothing. Now it’s much better, Reece’s dad explained it a bit.

"At their house they have a training net, I was hitting a little bit – I’m not that good.

“I’m trying to learn more because it’s his sport and when he has bad days I need to be aware and not ask stupid questions. I was at a match a couple of months ago, but am a nervous watcher.”