Bingham’s British No. 3 wheelchair tennis player David Phillipson bids for back-to-back singles titles this week after starting his season with victory on British soil over the weekend at the North West Challenge in Preston, where Ruddington’s James Shaw also earned his first international trophy of 2015.
Phillipson is fourth seed for this week’s Bolton Arena Indoor and after a bye he begins his challenge on Wednesday against French former world No. 1 Michael Jeremiasz, who Phillipson beat for the just the second time in his career when they met in the semi-finals in Preston on Saturday.
A 6-4 6-1 win over Spain’s Daniel Caverzaschi and a resounding 6-0, 6-0 victory over fellow Brit Ed Holt earned Phillipson his last four contest against Jeremiasz and the Nottinghamshire 26-yaer-old went on to win 6-2, 7-5 ahead of defeating a second French player, David Dalmasso, 6-2 , 6-3 in Sunday’s final.
“The draw in Preston was quite one-sided as Michael’s ranking dropped last year when he was out injured, so he went into the event without a seeding and our semi could have been the final in another year. I’m really pleased to have come through that well and then take the title without dropping a set. It sets me up well for Bolton,” said Phillipson, who first beat Jeremiasz at the Nottingham Indoor in 2013, when the former ITF World Champion was world ranked No. 7.
“I was a lot more clinical than I was in Nottingham a couple of years ago. I made the rallies shorter and finished the points quicker, so I’m playing well and I’ve been training well and I’m looking forward to a good season” added Phillipson, who also reached the men’s doubles semi-finals in Preston partnering Holt before they bowed out to French second seeds Dalmasso and Thomas Vinatier. Phillipson partners another fellow Brit, Gordon Reid, in the men’s doubles in Bolton.
The Preston tournament proved fruitful for both Nottinghamshire’s leading players on the Tennis Foundation Wheelchair Tennis Performance Programme as Shaw and compatriot Antony Cotterill reached the quad doubles final for the loss of just three games. The 19-year-old started his international season with a runners-up trophy after Israeli duo Haim Lev and Shraga Weinberg claimed the title 6-4, 6-2.
Shaw also made it through his opening quad singles match for the loss of just one game before Cotterill’s experienced proved too much in their semi-final and he now joins Phillipson among the entries in Bolton this week.