Ben Bartram and Ruby Bishop continue to shine as they claim successive wins
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Ben Bartram and Ruby Bishop welcomed more success, while Joshua Johns reached his second successive singles final in a week before finishing runner-up in Eindhoven.
Ben Bartram provided the outstanding performance during another week of success for Britain’s wheelchair tennis players. Seventeen-year-old Bartram claimed his first men’s singles title at ITF 3 level when winning the Flanders 25 in Belgium, earning not just his biggest senior title to date, but also the biggest match win of his career after defeating world No.13 and former world No.1 Maikel Scheffers of the Netherlands 6-4 3-6 6-3 in the semi-finals.
“If you’d told me a month ago that I’d be in the position I am now, of course I’d have taken it, but I probably wouldn't have believed it,” admitted Bartram as he reflected over what has been a very successful few weeks for the young star.
Bartram went on to recover from a set and 5-3 down to beat Korean Ho Won Im 2-6 7-5 6-4 in Sunday’s final, a result that has subsequently seen the world No.2 ranked junior earn a new career-best men's singles ranking at No.20.
“I’m determined to push on further now," Bartram said. "I know what level I’m able to complete at and it makes me want to push on and keep climbing the rankings and see how I can do at the higher-level tournaments.”
"Before I played my semi against Scheffers I was so excited. I just wanted to push myself against a top guy and that’s exactly what I did."
While the week started with Ruby Bishop and Andrew Penney winning the junior singles titles at the British Open, Bishop made it back-to-back girls’ singles titles after saving a match point to defeat USA top seed Maylee Phelps 4-6 7-6(4) 6-0 in the decisive match at the Amjoy Cup in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Bishop won all four of her round-robin matches to remain unbeaten and claimed her third ITF Junior Series singles title of the year, having beaten fellow Brit Ellie Robertson earlier in the tournament. Meanwhile, Joshua Johns, who finished runner-up to Penney in the boys’ singles at the British Open, reached his second successive singles final in a week before finishing runner-up to Austrian top seed Maximilian Taucher in Eindhoven.
However, Lucy Shuker’s bid to follow up her maiden British Open women’s singles final with a similar performance at the Swiss Open came to an early end after she bowed out in the singles quarter-finals. Shuker did, however, reach her sixth doubles final of the year partnering American Dana Mathewson before the top seeds finished runners-up to second seeds Manami Tanaka of Japan and Zhenzhen Zhu of China 6-3 6-1.