18 Mar 2017

Seeds continue to tumble at Arizona Open


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Photo: SMP ImagesDana Mathewson (USA)

The seeded players continued to fall on Friday’s second day of the Arizona Open, part of the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour, with the men’s singles and quad singles fourth seeds and women’s singles third seed all making their exit in the quarterfinals in Tucson.

Korea Republic will be doubly-represented in the men’s singles semifinals after Sung-Bong Han matched the feat of his countryman Ha-Gel Lee on the opening day and upset the seeding in his last eight contest.

Han beat Australian fourth seed Ben Weekes 64 62 to join Lee in the semifinals after the latter followed up his opening victory over second seed Evans Maripa by defeating USA 16-year-old Conner Stroud 62 61.

Han faces Dutch top seed Maikel Scheffers next after Scheffers contributed to ending the American interest in the ITF 2 event by beating Chris German 62 62. Lee plays Spanish third seed Daniel Caverzaschi for a place in the final follow Caverzaschi’s 60 63 victory over Argentina’s Ezequiel Casco.

Mathewson joins seeds in women’s semifinals

Dana Mathewson remains in the hunt for two titles in Tucson after setting up a singles semifinal against her doubles partner Lucy Shuker.

Mathewson defeated German third seed Katharina Kruger for the first time since 2010, winning their quarterfinal 75 63. Second seed Shuker beat her second Japanese opponent in successive days after a 62 63 win over Manami Tanaka.

Top seed Aniek van Koot and fourth seed Kgothatso Montjane will meet in the other women’s singles semifinal. Van Koot eased through her quarterfinal against Argentina’s Maria Moreno 60 61, with Montjane denting the American challenge after Kaitlyn Verfuerth 63 64.

Shaw and Hard join top two seeds in quad semifinals

As in the women’s singles, players from four different nations will contest the quad singles semifinals after Canada’s Rob Shaw prevented an all-American last four contest.

Shaw levelled his career head-to-head with USA’s Greg Hasterok at two wins apiece after overcoming the fourth-seeded Hasterok 62 61 in Tucson. Shaw goes on to face world No. 2 David Wagner. After a first round bye top seed Wagner wasted little time in getting his title challenge underway after beating fellow American Cecil Easley 61 61.

After beating third seed Antony Cotterill in his opening match, Sweden’s former world No.5 Anders Hard continued his quad singles progress with a 62 64 win over Canada’s Gary Luker. Meanwhile, second seed and former US Open champion Lucas-Sithole opened his 2017 account with a 61 63 victory over Guatemala’s Julio Rueda as the South African booked his semifinal berth against Hard.

Top seeds Bryan Barten and Wagner will face second seeds Heath Davidson and Sithole in the quad doubles final after both partnership dropped just four games in their respective semifinals. Meanwhile, top seeds Mathewson and Shuker will play second seeds Kruger and Montjane in the women’s doubles final after comfortable semifinal wins for both partnerships.

After needing a deciding match tiebreak to negotiate their opening men’s doubles match against Han and Lee, top seeds Scheffers and Weekes had a much more comfortable semifinal. They play second seeds Caverzaschi and Maripa for the title after Caverzaschi and Maripa raced through their semifinal 60 60.  

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