Italian players made the main headlines on the first day of the Trofeo della Mole, part of the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour, as Diego Amadori and Antonio Cippo both came from a set down to win two of four all-Italian matches in the men’s singles.
Amadori and Cippo both dropped the opening set of their matches by narrow margins, but Amadori fought back to beat Marco Sottani 57 60 61, while Cippo also largely dominated the last two set of his match against Ivan Lion to progress 57 60 63.
Marco Amadori beat Jean-Pierre Limborg of France, one of the most enthusiastic promoters of wheelchair tennis since the sport’s early beginnings, 62 61 to set up a second round match against Argentinean top seed Gustavo Fernandez.
Meanwhile, another Frenchman who has figured prominently in the history of the sport, former ITF World Champion and tournament seventh seed Laurent Giammartini, will now play Diego Amadori.
There were mixed results for the Italian players in two of the other matches on the opening day in Torino as Ahmed Jeddi of Morocco edged out Luca Paiardi 75 63, but Gerardo Riccardi beat a player ranked almost 140 places higher than himself when he defeated Austria’s Wolfgang Stieg 64 61.
The only men’s main draw match not to involve an Italian player ended with Gaetan Menguy of France beating Krysztof Brezyna of Poland 62 61 to book a second round match against Austrian third seed Martin Legner.
On the back of winning last week’s Ath Open, second seed Joachim Gerard of Belgium will open his bid for more success in Torino against Italy’s Antonio Moretto.
With just two places to play for in the last 16 of the women’s singles, Denise Boldi won her all-Italian match against Eleonora Grottoli 60 61, The unranked home player will face Dutch top seed Sharon Walraven next.
Meanwhile, Belgium’s Pathy Mortier booked her place in the last 16 against Swiss eighth seed Annabelle Ribeaud after beating Denmark’s Malene Olesen 75 61.