Paralympic Games
7-18 September

Late night for Lapthorne as he secures final place

Dutch dominant in women’s competition as players battle it out in sweltering temperatures at the Olympic Tennis Centre. 13 Sep 2016 By Andrew Cross

Dylan Alcott will face Andy Lapthorne in the battle for gold in the wheelchair tennis quad singles after the final line-up was decided late on Monday (12 September) night.

Great Britain’s Lapthorne battled past 2012 silver medallist David Wagner in a gripping showdown 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 which finished just after 11pm. They had played each other 41 times before this encounter and the Paralympics GB player had lost on 31 occasions.

In contrast, Australia’s world no.1 Alcott took less than an hour to beat South Africa’s Lucas Sithole 6-0, 6-3, to stay on course for a two-sport gold medal title, after winning wheelchair basketball gold in 2008.

Speaking after securing his final spot, Alcott said: “I played really well and I think Lucas might have been a bit tired early on. It was a big occasion, so I just tried to relax myself as much as possible.

“I thought today was going to be a real tough match, so to win by that score line I wasn’t really expecting it.”

The Netherlands dominated the women’s singles as three of their players advanced to the semi-final stages during a day when all of the players faced sweltering conditions at the Olympic Tennis Centre.

Rising talent Diede de Groot was triumphant over Brit and third seed Jordanne Whiley as the Dutch star charged to a commanding 6-1, 6-3, victory.

“It’s absolutely amazing. I’ve worked really hard for this, of course everyone is working really hard, but I can’t even believe it yet,” said de Groot.

“I’ve had quite a lot of good results lately and I know I can play really well against all these girls, so it feels good to win against them.”

The 19-year-old was joined in the semi-finals by fellow compatriots Jiske Griffioen and Aniek van Koot as the won their quarter-final matches 6-0, 6-0, and 6-1, 5-7, 6-1, respectively.

Whilst second seed Yui Kamiji denied Netherlands total women’s singles domination as she beat Marjolein Buis 6-2, 6-0.

The Dutch dominance continued in the women’s doubles as the two pairs guaranteed their country’s seventh successive women’s doubles gold medal.

Top seeds Jiske Griffioen and Aniek van Koot beat the challenge of British duo Jordanne Whiley and Lucy Shuker 6-3, 6-3. And Diede de Groot and Marjolein Buis advanced into the final after a 3hr 43min classic over Japan’s Yui Kamiji and Miho Nijo 6-4, 5-7, 7-5.