Photo: Roy Smiljanic PhotographyMichael Jeremiasz (FRA)
Michael Jeremiasz and Gordon Reid will contest Sunday’s men’s singles final at the Melbourne Open, part of the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour, after they upset the two top seeds in Saturday’s semifinals, while Aniek van Koot and Jiske Griffioen won through to reach the women’s singles final and Andy Lapthorne and Anders Hard set up a decider in the first quad singles event of 2013.
World No. 6 Jeremiasz, who saw his Sydney International Open title defence come to an end against world No. 3 Maikel Scheffers of the Netherlands in the quarterfinals, kept his Melbourne Open title defence in tact in a semifinal contest in which he saved two match points in the second set against top seed Scheffers.
The Frenchman eventually came through 26 76(6) 64, reflecting afterwards: “It wasn’t out greatest match, but it was a beautiful fight back.” Meanwhile, Scheffers was left to rue not taking his changes and making too many errors.
The other men’s semifinal also featured a second set tiebreak, but although it went against world No. 8 Reid, the Brit dominated the first and third sets against world No. 5 and second seed Gustavo Fernandez of Argentina to earn a 62 67(5) 61 victory and a place in his second singles final of 2013.
Reid and Scheffers have justified their top seeding so far to reach the men’s doubles final after beating Australian duo Henry de Cure and Jerry Markoja 60 61 in the semifnals. Reid and Scheffers will now play second seeds Eliphas Maripa of South African and Ben Weekes of Australia, who won their semifinal against Korea Republic’s Sam-Ju Kim and Australia’s Keegan Oh-Chee 60 64.
Van Koot and Griffioen set for Sydney rematch
Van Koot and Griffioen will meet in an all-Dutch women’s singles final for the second successive tournament after both easing through their respective semifinals.
World No. 2 and top seed van Koot led fellow Dutchwoman and world No. 6 Sharon Walraven 6-3 6-2 when Walraven was forced to retire with a hand injury that she now hopes will recover sufficiently to allow her to take her place in the field for next week’s Australian Open.
Meanwhile, van Koot will hope to avenge her loss to world No. 4 Griffioen in the final of the Sydney International Open after Griffioen beat world No. 3 Sabine Ellerbrock 62 62 in the other semifinal – her second semifinal win over the German player in a week.
A straight final for the women’s doubles ended in victory for South Africa’s Kgothatso Montjane and Korea Republic’s Ju-Yeon Park after they beat Australian duo Sarah Calati and Luca Josevksi 60 63.
Lapthorne and Hard to contest first quad singles final of 2013
World No. 4 Lapthorne and world No. 5 Hard will both bid for a confidence boost going into next week’s Australian Open as they go head-to-head in the first quad singles decider of the 2013 NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour.
Lapthorne and Hard have both beaten John Savinov without dropping a game and beaten India’s Harry Boniface Prabhu for the loss of just three games apiece in their first two round-robin matches in Melbourne. They will bid to win the first title of the year in the quad division after ending 2012 with Lapthorne having won three of the five matches they played last season, although Hard beat the British player in the first round of the London 2012 Paralympics.