Griffioen and van Koot start Wimbledon title defence

The Dutch players are bidding to become Wimbledon champions for a third consecutive year, whilst Stephane Houdet and Shingo Kunieda will defend their title. 04 Jul 2014
Two women in wheelchairs look at each other smiling on a grass tennis court.

The Netherlands' Jiske Griffioen and Aniek van Koot celebrate a doubles victory at the 2013 Wimbledon wheelchair tennis tournament.

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The Netherlands’ Jiske Griffioen and Aniek van Koot begin the second defence of their grand slam title in the Wheelchair Tennis Doubles Event at Wimbledon, Great Britain, on Friday (4 July).

Griffioen and van Koot, starting this year’s title bid in London as second seeds, face Great Britain’s Lucy Shuker, a former three-time finalist with two different partners, and Germany’s Sabine Ellerbrock.

This is a contest that pits the most established partnership in the women’s doubles against the pairing with the least experience.

Griffioen and van Koot won their very first tournament together in 2005, before adding a further 21 doubles crowns. Meanwhile, Ellerbrock and Shuker have only played their first two tournaments together this year, winning one and reaching the final of the other.

The other women’s semi-final sees Japan’s Yui Kamiji and Great Britain’s Jordanne Whiley, last years’ defeated finalists, start their bid for a third successive Grand Slam title against the wild card partnership of Germany’s Katharina Kruger and Sharon Walraven of the Netherlands.

Walraven has won the Wimbledon title twice with her compatriot Esther Vergeer, but there would need to be an upset to keep her ambitions of a third title on course this year. Kamiji and Whiley start this year’s competition as top seeds, having successfully secured the Australian Open and French Open earlier this year.


The start of the men’s doubles on Saturday sees the defending champions - France’s Stephan Houdet and Japan’s Shingo Kunieda - play the Netherlands’ Tom Egberink and Great Britain’s Gordon Reid.

Top seeds Houdet and Kunieda have had a successful 2014, becoming Australian Open champions, regaining a title they won for the first time in 2010.

Their only previous match against Egberink and Reid ended in a straight sets win in the semi-finals of the 2013 BNP Paribas Open de France Super Series, but Egberink and Reid are likely to provide stern opposition, with Egberink having already tasted victory at Wimbledon in 2012 with Frenchman Michael Jeremiasz.

Egberink and Jeremiasz’s title defence ended in last year’s semi-finals and the Dutchman will be keen to avoid a repeat, while Reid is attempting to reach his first Wimbledon final.

Houdet arrives at Wimbledon bidding for his third straight Grand Slam men’s doubles title after partnering Belgium’s Joachim Gerard to victory at Roland Garros last month.

Gerard makes his Wimbledon debut this year and pairs up with Frenchman Frederic Cattaneo, who reached the final last year with the Netherlands’ Ronald Vink, after they upset defending champions Egberink and Jeremiasz.

Vink, already a three-time champion at Wimbledon, will be on the opposite side of the net to Cattaneo in Saturday’s men’s semi-finals, as he reunites with fellow Dutchman Maikel Scheffers. Scheffers and Vink won the Wimbledon title in 2011 and enter the tournament as second seeds this year.