Photo: James Jordan PhotographyJiske Griffioen (NED)
World No 4 Jiske Griffioen claimed the first Super Series title on the 2013 NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour on Monday after a tremendous performance saw her beat world No. 2 and top seed Aniek van Koot in the all-Dutch women’s singles final at the APIA Sydney International.
Meanwhile, on an enthralling penultimate day of play, world No. 3 Maikel Scheffers made it a good day for Dutch players when he beat world No. 1 Stephane Houdet of France to reach Tuesday’s men’s singles final against world No. 2 Shingo Kunieda of Japan.
After Griffioen had beaten van Koot in their last singles match of 2012 to win her maiden NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters title in Belgium in November, the third seed put up an even more dominant performance in the Sydney final to win 61 60.
“I am very happy with my latest Super Series title,” said Griffioen. “The conditions were a little tough with the wind we had, but it gives me confidence going into the Australian Open Grand Slam next week.”
Griffioen and van Koot later paired up to reach the women’s doubles final. The reigning Doubles Masters and Wimbledon champions defeated Germany’s Sabine Ellerbrock and Sharon Walraven of the Netherlands 64 62.
Top seeds Griffioen and van Koot face second seeds Marjolein Buis of the Netherlands and Lucy Shuker of Great Britain in the final after Buis and Shuker held off a determined effort from Yui Kamiji of Japan and Ju-Yeon Park of Korea Republic to edge the other semifinal 61 57 64.
Scheffers defeats world No. 1 Houdet to reach men’s final
Scheffers forced top seed Houdet into a final set tiebreak for the second time in successive days in their men’s singles semifinal after dropping a first set tiebreak, but taking the second set comfortably.
However, whereas France’s 2012 ITF World champion was able to find a way to win the points that counted to win the final set tiebreak in his quarterfinal against Britain’s Gordon Reid, it was Scheffers that won the vital points on this occasion as he clinched a thrilling 67(6) 62 76(3) victory.
The other men’s semifinal could not have been won in more contrasting circumstances as Japan’s world No. 2 Shingo Kunieda sped past eighth seed Nicolas Peifer of France 60 61.
With Michael Jeremiasz of France and Kunieda having already booked their place in the men’s doubles final, the other semifinal, held over from the third day of play, ended in a straight sets win for top seeds Houdet and Dutchman Ronald Vink.
Houdet and Vink beat Gustavo Fernandez of Argentina and Marin Legner of Austria 63 63 in their semifinal.