Japan’s three-time Paralympic gold medallist Shingo Kunieda will face Argentina’s 2017 Australian Open champion Gustavo Fernandez on 18 May in an enticing men’s singles second round match at the Japan Open, the third Super Series of the year.
In 2012, Fernandez ended a sequence of six successive Japan Open titles for Kunieda to become the youngest wheelchair tennis player ever to win a men’s singles Super Series at 18 years old.
Japanese player Satoshi Saida, another former Japan Open champion, also progressed to the second round, and will face Great Britain’s double Rio 2016 gold medallist Gordon Reid.
France’s world No.1 Stephane Houdet is the front-runner to win the title. His compatriot and No.4 Nicolas Peifer, Sweden’s Stefan Olsson and Great Britain’s Alfie Hewett are others to look out for.
Women’s main draw set after qualifying round
Eleven Japanese players will line up in the first round. The home crowd will be hoping that world No.2 and reigning Australian Open champion Yui Kamiji will lift the trophy. But she will need to be in top form to beat the Netherlands’ world No.3 Diede de Groot and No.4 Marjolein Buis.
Alcott to play fellow Australian Davidson in quad second round
Word No.1 Dylan Alcott will begin the defence of his Japan Open quad singles title against his Rio Paralympic doubles gold medal-winning partner Heath Davidson.
USA’s world No. 2 David Wagner will play against his compatriot Steven Baxter for a quarterfinal berth, whilst Japan’s former world No. 6 Shota Kawano is set to meet South Africa’s world No. 4 Lucas Sithole in two of the most exciting matches.
Full story can be found on the International Tennis Federation’s website.