Search

Champions retain NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters titles

PUBLISHED: 19:35 04 December 2016

Joachim Gerard of Belgium celebrates after winning the men's final against Gordon Reid at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (pic Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for LTA)

Joachim Gerard of Belgium celebrates after winning the men's final against Gordon Reid at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (pic Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for LTA)

2016 Getty Images

Gerard, Griffioen and Wagner all win again

Jiske Griffioen of Holland poses for a photo with her trophy after winning the women's final at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (pic Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for LTA) Jiske Griffioen of Holland poses for a photo with her trophy after winning the women's final at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (pic Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for LTA)

Joachim Gerard, Jiske Griffioen and David Wagner all successfully defended their respective titles at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at the Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre.

Each faced a formidable opponent, with 25-year-old Belgian Gerard taking on Paralympic champion Gordon Reid of Great Britain, who had also won at Wimbledon and the Australian Open and was set to end the season as the new world number one.

Reid held a 9-8 advantage in previous meetings, but Gerard had won the most recent clash at the British Open in July, before winning bronze at the Paralympics and took the first game on Reid’s serve.

But Reid found his rhythm and went up 2-1 with powerful cross-court forehands and deft sliced back-hand strokes, before Gerard hit back to take the match to 4-3.

David Wagner poses with his trophy and the ball crew after winning the men's quads final at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (pic Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for LTA) David Wagner poses with his trophy and the ball crew after winning the men's quads final at the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park (pic Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for LTA)

Reid broke the Belgian’s serve to level at 4-4, then moved ahead and took the first set 6-4 when the powerful Gerard double-faulted.

The second set saw neither player give an inch, with every point keenly contested as the score levelled at 4-4 after 52 minutes of play.

Both players were breaking serve and Gerard nosed ahead to take the second set to 5-4, before a delightful sliced backhand by Gerard gave him set point.

Reid took the next two points, before Gerard served out to take the set 6-4 and then took a 4-0 lead in the deciding set with his powerful serve.

But Reid fought back to trail 5-4, before Gerard served out to win 4-6, 6-4, 6-4.

He said: “It was not an easy match and I made some mistakes. I told myself to focus on my game and I served well though I was nervous near the end.

“I am very happy how I managed to play. It was not easy but I managed to play my game. To win here – yes, it’s very impressive.”

A disappointed Reid added: “Yesterday I had that nervous energy but today I wasn’t in that mind-set.

“I started well (from a scoreline perspective), but really I wasn’t serving or returning as well as I have in the other matches.

“He started nailing his shots and it was difficult to find my rhythm for the first time this week. I feel frustratedbut Joachim played well. It reminds me that there is still a lot of things I can work on.”

After the excitement of the men’s final, Griffioen and Japan’s Yui Kamiji came on to centre court to do battle and the Dutchwoman came from 3-1 down to snatch the set 6-4.

World number one Griffioen continued to press Kamiji, going 3-1 up in the second set before her rival rallied to level at 4-4.

But Griffioen took the next two games to retain her crown and said: “I’m really happy. It has been a long, tough week. Yui is a tough opponent and we always have close matches.

“I’m really pleased, even if it was a struggle, to have won and retained my title. For me the Masters is kind of like a fifth Slam as you are competing against only the top eight players in the world. Today was another close fight and I’m pleased to end it on a high.”

Kamiji added: “This week I have been very happy with my performance but not today. She (Griffioen) knew where I wanted to hit it and I think I need to change for next year.

“I don’t like being runner-up. This year was not my best performance and I want to learn more.”

That left the quad final and Wagner was seeking his fifth successive title against Israel’s Itay Erenlib, in his first NEC Masters final.

American Wagner carved out a 4-1 lead, before his rival took the next two games, and went on to win the first set 6-4.

Wagner then made his experience tell and raced through the second set to take it 6-1 and clinch his ninth NEC Wheelchair Masters title overall.

He said: “It’s hard to sum up. It has been a long and hard week because the best of the best are here. I pulled on a lot of experience out there.

“I was 4-1 up in the first set but then Itay started returning everything I hit. I got that first set and then I relax a little as you know you are either going to win it or have to go the full distance.

“For me it’s a true honour. I don’t know what it is that means I peak at the end of the season – I just know I love tennis!”

Third-place play-offs also took place, with Sweden’s Stefan Olsson beating Frenchman Stephane Houdet 6-3, 6-1 and Deide de Groot defeating fellow Dutchwoman Marjolein Buis 6-1, 6-1.

In the quad division, Londoner Andy Lapthorne beat Korea’ sKyu-Seung Kim 6-1, 6-2.

Latest Romford Sports News

Yesterday, 11:45

Romford fell to their seventh consecutive league defeat and dropped to the foot of the Bostik North table with a 3-1 defeat to Waltham Abbey.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Latest news from the supporters’ association

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Vanarama National League: Torquay United 0 Dagenham & Redbridge 3 (Okenabirhie 50, Robson 76, Efete o.g. 88)

Saturday, February 17, 2018

London Raiders will be back on home ice when they take on league leaders Basingstoke Bison tomorrow (5.15pm) at the Sapphire Ice and Leisure Centre.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Hornchurch manager Jimmy McFarlane is keen to keep setting the pace at the top of the Bostik North ahead of their clash with AFC Sudbury.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Dagenham & Redbridge Jake Howells is relishing playing regularly and learning his new role as a left-back ahead of their clash with Torquay United this weekend.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Ahead of Saturday’s game at Gulls, Daggers are 11th in table and seven points outside play-offs

Friday, February 16, 2018

Romford manager Paul Martin believes new faces means a bit of a fresh start for him as his side look to dig themselves out a rut.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Window and conservatory specialist Ken Rhodes talks about the possibilities for brightening up your home for the new year, and with their home improvement finance deals it’s possible for everyone to make some changes

Lisa and Jennie are cousins who grew up in the borough. Their grandmother, ‘Nanny Fish’ was a huge part of their lives, and while she had dementia and increasing needs, she really benefited from having care in her nephew’s loving home. This experience was the inspiration for Lisa and Jennie to set-up their own home care service.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

Show Job Lists

News from your area

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now