Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid completed a memorable day for British tennis today at The Championships, Wimbledon as the top seeds earned their fifth men’s wheelchair doubles title together at the All England Club and their 18th Grand Slam title, while Hewett booked his place in his second successive men’s singles final.
These two guys (Hewett and Oda) are going to have a great singles match tomorrow, so come back out and support them and get behind wheelchair tennis again. Gordon Reid
Hewett beat Spain’s Martin de la Puente 6-3 6-2 on No.1 Court to reach his 15th Grand Slam singles final. Victory in Sunday’s title decider against Japan’s Tokito Oda would see the British No.1 regain the world No.1 ranking from Oda and become just the second men’s wheelchair player to complete a career Grand Slam.
Five games in a row saw Hewett take the opening set of his singles semi-final, while he wrapped up victory on his fourth match point after an hour and 29 minutes to book his place in his fifth successive major final. Returning to court No.1 later to partner Reid to victory, Hewett said:
“I feel like I’m playing confidently. It’s a lot of pressure to put on your shoulders, to go out there and play in front of all those people, which we’re still getting used to, but we embrace it. I just really try to go full guns in, full guns blazing and just give it my all.”
Reid, winner of the inaugural men’s singles title at The Championships in 2016, lost his singles semi-final to top seed Oda 6-3 6-4, However, he put any disappointment firmly behind him as he and Hewett, both supported by LTA’s Wheelchair Elite Programme, completed a stirring comeback against Oda and Takuya Miki to win the doubles final 3-6 6-0 6-3 after two hours and 20 minutes.
Back-to-back love service games for the two Brits saw them edge ahead 3-2 in the final set and it was a lead they were not to lose in front of an adoring near-capacity crowd under the roof on No.1 Court.
Applauding the fan support, Reid said: “I want to say thank you to all our team from the LTA. On match point we were both tearing up a little bit because of the atmosphere. My first Wimbledon was in 2008. If you’d told me then that we’d be on No.1 Court in front of a nearly full stadium with a crowd going absolutely berserk, I’d never have believed you. These two guys (Hewett and Oda) are going to have a great singles match tomorrow, so come back out and support them and get behind wheelchair tennis again.”