For the first time there will be two Brits in the men’s wheelchair singles semi-finals at The Championships, Wimbledon, after Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid secured straight sets wins over former champions Gustavo Fernandez and Joachim Gerard on Wednesday at the All England Club.
I had to dig myself out of a couple of holes in the second set, but I’m really pleased with my performance and it’s a good start to build on. Gordon Red
World No.2 Hewett beat Belgian world No.3 and 2021 champion Joachim Gerard 6-3, 6-4 to earn his first victory over Gerard in five matches on grass and begin his quest to complete the career Grand Slam.
After losing out to Gerard in three sets last month at the LTA’s cinch Championships, Hewett kept his composure to close out their latest encounter and last year’s Wimbledon runner-up will now play Spain’s Martin de la Puente on Thursday for a place in this year’s final. He said:
““It was pure relief at the end – I’ve played him a few times now on grass and he’s always seemed to get the better of me. It’s one of those mental demons that you want to get over the line at some point – this was a great opportunity to do it against such a great grass court player.”
Reid put together 11 points without reply on his way to the first set against 2019 champion Fernandez and withstood all that the Argentinian could offer in a tough second set to wrap up a 6-4 6-4 victory that earns him a semi-final against world No.1 Tokito Oda.
The winner of the inaugural men’s wheelchair singles title in 2016, world No.8 Reid, said:
“I had to dig myself out of a couple of holes in the second set, but I’m really pleased with my performance and it’s a good start to build on. This is the Slam where I come in feeling the most confident as I feel good on the grass, and the support that we get as British players gives you extra energy.”
Elsewhere, Lucy Shuker’s bid to reach a first Wimbledon women’s singles semi-final ended in a 2-6 6-1 6-2 loss to her doubles partner Aniek can Koot of the Netherlands.
Meanwhile, Andy Lapthorne lost out to world No.1 Niels Vink 6-1, 6-0 and Greg Slade’s Grand Slam tournament debut ended in a 6-2, 6-4 loss to Australian Heath Davidson as British hopes ended in the quad singles.
Thursday’s second day of wheelchair competition will see all five Brits in action again as the focus turns to the men’s, women’s and quad doubles semi-finals.