Reid and Whiley set for wheelchair tennis finals at cinch Championships and Viking Classic Birmingham
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Gordon Reid saved two match points on Saturday afternoon to beat Belgium’s Joachim Gerard 3-6, 6-1, (13-11) and book his place in Sunday’s men’s wheelchair singles final at the cinch Championships.
Reid and fellow Brit Jordanne Whiley will both bid for grass court titles on Sunday, with Whiley also set to contest the women’s doubles decider at the Viking Classic Birmingham after narrowly missing out on a place in the women’s singles final at the Edgbaston Priory Club.
Wimbledon champion in 2016, Reid will contest his second successive singles final at The Queen’s Club, having finished runner up to countryman Alfie Hewett in 2019.
They were due to meet in this year’s semi-finals, but with Hewett withdrawing early on Saturday due to a back injury, Reid went straight into his last four match against World No.4 Gerard.
“I was trying to force it a little bit too much in the first set,” he said. “The first couple of games were pretty tight, but then my first serve percentage went down and I needed to get myself fired up a bit at the start of the second set. As I didn’t get to play a quarter-final I had to get myself going a bit.”
World No.5 Reid said the energy from the on-site support after Cam Norrie’s singles semi-final win was among the factors that helped secure him his 17th victory over Gerard in 34 meetings. Now set to face top seed Gustavo Fernandez of Argentina in Sunday’s final.
“It was pretty cold conditions and quite quiet out there, but once the match finished on Centre Court we had a good atmosphere in the tie-break and I think the quality of the tie-break was quite good,” Reid said.
“I’m pleased with the way I turned it around. This match was another step forwards for me and I’m looking forward to another opportunity to put in a good performance in the final.”
Friday’s rain meant the players had to play their quarter-final and semi-final singles matches in the same day. Fernandez, the 2019 Wimbledon champion, opened his challenge with a 6-2, 6-2 quarter-final victory over 2017 and 2018 Wimbledon champion Stefan Olsson before going on to defeat Frenchman Stephane Houdet 6-4, 3-6, (11-9).
“I’m not very happy about my performance in the second match today,” he said. “I think I played a brilliant first match against Stefan Olsson earlier, but I couldn’t keep my level up in the second match and my attitude was not the best. I could have done a lot of things differently.
“Gordon’s always a tough opponent so I just have to be ready to be very active on court and just play my game.”
Whiley also had to play her quarter-final and semi-final singles matches in one day in Birmingham, defeating 18-year-old fellow Brit Abbie Breakwell 6-0, 6-2 before going to take top seed and “orld No.2 Yui Kamiji of Japan deep into a third set for the second time in three weeks.
However, Kamiji ultimately prevailed 6-1, 5-7, 7-5. She will now partner Whiley in the women’s doubles final on Sunday after facing Dutch second seed Aniek van Koot in the singles final.
World No.4 Whiley, whose last final against Kamiji was at the Open des Hauts-de-France in Le Touquet in late May, said:
“It was really nice to play on home ground again,” she said. “Even though there were not a lot of people here, I really felt like there was some good energy and I really fed off that energy of being at home.
“Obviously I’m really disappointed that I lost, but it was a close battle and I gave everything that I had in the tank. ”I’m just glad I’ve got two more weeks before Wimbledon and so I can get my head down and start drilling, because I really felt like I had that match, I just made too many errors.”
Kamiji will play world No.3 Van Koot in Sunday’s singles final after Van Koot raced past South Africa’s Kgothatso Montjane 6-0, 6-1 in her semi-final. Eleven-time Grand Slam champions Kamiji and Whiley later play Montjane and Van Koot in the women’s doubles decider.
The men’s doubles final at The Queen’s Club will see Gerard and Olsson face Dutchman Tom Egberink and Fernandez.