Japan upset hosts Israel to take their first World Team Cup wheelchair tennis quad title in Ramat Hasharon on Friday.
London 2012 gold medallist Noam Gershony gave the home crowd a reason to celebrate as he defeated Shota Kawano 6-0, 6-4 to win the first match. However, former world No. 1 Shraga Weinberg lost to world No. 3 Koji Sugeno 6-2, 6-3 and the tie had to be decided in the doubles.
Sugeno joined forces with Mitsuteru Moroishi and, showing great form, beat the Israeli pair of Gershony and Weinberg 6-4, 6-2.
It is the first time that Japan win the World Team Cup since the quad event was included in 1998, while denying Israel the chance to emerge as champions for a fifth time.
France and Great Britain to decide men’s winner
The British team is still en route to winning the men’s World Team Cup title again after four years, following a 2-0 victory over defending champions Japan.
World No. 7 Gordon Reid beat No. 9 Takashi Sanada 6-4, 7-5 to give Great Britain the first point of the day. In the second match, No. 5 Alfie Hewett sprang a surprise by beating No. 1 Shingo Kunieda also 6-4, 7-5 and qualify for the final.
A deciding doubles rubber was needed for the semi-final between France and Argentina. Nicolas Peifer had no issues in defeating Ezequiel Casco 6-0, 6-0; but Gustavo Fernandez beat Stephane Houdet 3-6, 7-6 (3), 6-2 to make it 1-1.
Paralympic champions Houdet and Peifer, however, then defeated Fernandez and Agustin Ledesma 6-1, 6-0 to advance into the gold medal-match.
In the women’s final, Netherlands will play against Japan on Saturday.
Selected matches are being live streamed on the International Paralympic Committee homepage.