Andy Lapthorne moved into the quad singles final alongside South Africa’s Lucas Sithole while Jordanne Whiley and Lucy Shuker set up an all-Brit women’s singles semi-final on Friday’s third day of play at Nottingham Indoor Wheelchair Tennis Tournament.
Saturday’s penultimate day of competition at Nottingham Tennis Centre will also see Gordon Reid continue his bid to retain the men’s singles title after he joined the top three seeds in the semi-finals.
World No.4 Lapthorne faces world No. 3 and top seed Sithole in a rematch of July’s British Open quad singles final in Nottingham after defeating Israel’s Itay Erenlib 6-2, 6-4 in the last four. British Open champion Sithole won his semi-final against Britain’s Jamie Burdekin 6-2, 6-3.
“It was a very good and very high quality match and a glimpse into what the future holds with players like Itay around,” said Lapthorne. “There were some long rallies and I was able to find a good rhythm ahead of tomorrow, so it was good preparation for the final and for the NEC Masters in two weeks,” said Lapthorne.
British Open and US Open women’s champion Whiley earned a 6-2, 7-6(3) victory over Brazil’s Mayara in their last eight match while world No.7 Shuker finished strongly to beat Germany’s Katharina Kruger 6-0, 5-7,6-2.
“That’s the first time I’ve played her and the first time I’ve seen her play and she’s a very good player. She won the Parapan Am Games gold medal a few months ago to earn automatic qualification for Rio, so I’m happy to have finished it off in straight sets after being a break down in the second,” said world No. 4 and top seed Whiley.
“I’ve got to give it to Katharina she played well today. I’m trying out a few things I’ve been working on in training, so I’m very happy with the win and can look forward to the semi-final now,” said Shuker.
The other final will see German second seed Sabine Ellerbrock face unseeded Diede de Groot after world No.9 de Groot beat her fellow Dutchwoman and third seed Marjolein Buis 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.
Reid came from 3-1 down in the second set against 2012 champion Maikel Scheffers to complete a 6-3, 7-5 win over the Dutchman against whom he has contested three of the last four Nottingham Indoor finals. He now faces top seed Stephane Houdet of France for a place in this year’s final after the world No. 2 marked his birthday with a 7-5, 2-6, 6-1 win over Argentinian fifth seed Gustavo Fernandez.
“He was playing some good tennis and I maybe lost a bit of focus in the second set, but I’m very happy with the way I came back to finish it in straight sets and be able to save some energy for the semi-final tomorrow,” said Reid.
World No. 3 Nicolas Peifer of France will play Belgium’s Joachim Gerard in the other men’s semi-final after Peifer won the last eight games for a 6-2, 6-0 win over Sweden’s 2014 Nottingham Indoor runner-up Stefan Olsson. Gerard earned a hard won 6-3, 5-7, 6-3 quarter-final win over Dutchman Tom Egberink.
With the women’s doubles and quad doubles finals on Saturday, Shuker partners South Africa’s Kgothatso Montjane in the women’s doubles final after they beat de Groot and Mayara 3-6, 6-0, (10-3) in a match tie-break. They play Buis and Michaela Spaanstra for the title after the Dutch duo beat the all-Brit pair of Louise Hunt and Whiley 6-2, 6-4.
Burdekin and Lapthorne will contest the quad doubles final after beating James Shaw and Sithole 6-0, 6-2. However, Antony Cotterill could not make it three Brits into the quad doubles decider after he and Erenlib lost out to the USA’s Bryan Barten and Brazil’s Ymanitu Silva 7-6(4), 6-3.
World No.1 junior Alfie Hewett will also be in Saturday’s men’s doubles semi-final alongside his Japanese partner Takuya Miki after Reid’s French doubles partner Michael Jeremiasz had to withdraw ahead of their scheduled quarter-final.
Organised by the Tennis Foundation, the Nottingham Indoor is an ITF 1 Series event on the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour and is held at Nottingham Tennis Centre. The tournament is supported by Nottingham City Council and entry is free to all spectators. For more information please visit www.wheelchairtennis.org.uk.
Tickets for the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters start from just £2 for community groups and schools up to a maximum of £15 for the weekend semi-finals and finals. All kids can come along for a quid and there is an Activity Zone full of entertainment for all the family. Tickets can be purchased at www.wheelchairtennismasters.com.