Gordon Reid and Andy Lapthorne kept alive their hopes of lifting singles titles at the 30th British Open Wheelchair Tennis Championships when both Brits secured their place in the semi-finals on Thursday’s third day of play at the Nottingham Tennis Centre.
It was very hot out there; possibly the hottest day of the year, but it’s good to get through another tough match and I’m very happy to be in the semis here again. Gordon Reid
Lapthorne made a fine start to his quad singles quarter-final against Brazilian seventh seed Ymanitu Silva and quickly managed to turn the momentum in his favour at the beginning of the deciding set before wrapping up a 6-3, 2-6, 6-2 victory. World No. 3 and top seed Lapthorne, who is aiming to earn a place in his fifth British Open final in six years, plays Dutch world No. 5 Sam Schroder next.
Lapthorne said “He played very well. It was very hot out there; possibly the hottest day of the year, but it’s good to get through another tough match and I’m very happy to be in the semis here again. I’ve got a lot of experience now, I know what I can do and I know when to switch on. So it’s all good and I’m expecting another tough match now against Sam.”
On another good day for players on the LTA’s GB Wheelchair Tennis World Class Performance Programme, Reid took full advantage of an early break against Dutch wold No. 9 Tom Egberink, carrying his form into the second set to complete a 6-3, 6-2 victory. Reid will play world No. 1 and 2017 British Open champion Gustavo Fernandez for a place in this year’s final.
After extending his unbeaten career record against Egberink to 16 matches, Reid said:
“Tom’s got a lot of confidence at the moment, but I was in control most of the match. It’s a good match up for me and I have a good plan against him. I feel like I’m striking the ball as well as I have done for the last couple of years. I’m happy with the way I’m playing and while it’s a big challenge against Gustavo, who’s in the form of his life at the minute, I feel there’s definitely a chance to win it.”
Jordanne Whiley put up a tremendous effort in her women’s singles quarter-final. Playing in her first British Open since returning from maternity leave in February, the 2015 and 2016 British Open champion came close to upsetting defending champion and world No. 1 Diede de Groot before the Dutch top seed narrowly prevailed 7-5, 3-6, 6-2. Whiley said:
“I was pretty pleased with the performance because the last time I played Diede last month in France it was 6-3, 6-2. I’m changing a lot of things in my game at the moment and I’m about a week into that process, so to come out and go a close three sets with the world No.1 is only positive.”
Thursday’s third day of action at the LTA hard court event ended with added success for the Brit partnership of Alfie Hewett and Reid.
The reigning US Open champions came from a set and 3-1 down to edge out 2018 British Open champions and reigning Australian Open and Wimbledon champions Joachim Gerard of Belgium and Stefan Olsson of Sweden 6-7(4), 7-6(4), 6-4 to reach Saturday’s men’s doubles final.
While Friday’s fourth day of competition at Nottingham Tennis Centre will see Lapthorne and Reid both play their singles semi-finals, Lucy Shuker and Whiley will also be on opposite sides of the net in the same women’s doubles final.
Friday’s action will also see the continuation of the Nottingham Futures Tournament, which features many of Britan’s leading junior players, including local East Midlands stars Abbie Breakwell and Dahnon Ward, who are among the players on the LTA’s Junior Futures Potential Programme.
LTA has invested in making the event free for all spectators. To book tickets visit www.lta.org.uk