Great Britain won a third quad title and the Netherlands retained the women's title as the 25th Invacare World Team Cup drew to a close on Sunday in bright sunshine at the City of Nottingham Tennis Centre.
After rain had interrupted the schedule for much of the week, there were few weather concerns as a busy order of play featured four finals, with Nick Taylor getting top seeds the United States off to a fine start in the quad final as he took the opening set of the first singles rubber against Jamie Burdekin (GBR) 62. However, having beaten Taylor for the very first time at this year's Pensacola Open, Burdekin dug deep and completed an amazing turn around in fortunes to prevail 26 61 62.
After losing out to David Wagner (USA) a week ago in the quad singles final at the British Open and subsequently losing the world No. 1 ranking, Peter Norfolk fought back from 3-5 down in the second rubber and aced Wagner to move ahead for the first time in the match at 6-5. A backhand return from the Briton brought up his first set point and Wagner double-faulted to put Norfolk in the driving seat.
It was Norfolk who earned the first break of the second set, but Wagner put together four games in a row to lead 5-3. However, Norfolk held his nerve and started producing some big serves again, eventually forcing a tiebreak and going on to lead it 5-0 before having the first of five match points at 6-1. But it was not until his third match point that Norfolk managed to find the winning shot, a backhand down the line wrapping up a famous Great Britain victory after a 75 76(3) win.
"It's such a great feeling to get the World Team Cup trophy back after seven years and to do it on home soil and with that kind of support from the crowd is awesome," said Norfolk. "It's been a testing week, but it's been a great experience and a great performance and one we can build on ahead of 2012."
Netherlands win 22nd Invacare World Team Cup women's title
After reaching the Invacare World Team Cup women's final for the very first time, second seeds Great Britain were always going to be up against it when they met top seeds the Netherlands in Sunday's title decider, but 17-year-old British No 2 and world junior No 1 Jordanne Whiley put up a determined performance before eventually succumbing to world No. 2 Korie Homan 63 62.
However, British No 1 Lucy Shuker faced an even tougher task against world No. 1 Esther Vergeer and the 28-year-old Dutchwoman wrapped up a 6-0, 6-0 victory to give the Netherlands their 22nd Invacare World Team Cup women's title.
"We came here with so much expectation on us after so many wins before, so to keep the title is great," said Vergeer. "In each match I set myself goals and you try and achieve those goals whatever the circumstances or the opposition. I love this event, it's always great to have the coach on the court and Marc (Kalkman) has done a great job this week."
France and Austria win men's World Group titles
Dutch retain Invacare World Team Cup junior title