23 January 2019
Battling British four miss out at Australian Open
Reigning Paralympic singles champion Gordon Reid bowed out of the Australian Open at the quarter-final stage on a difficult day for British hopes in Melbourne.
Reid played out a thrilling two hours and 38-minute contest with Stéphane Houdet, a 2018 finalist in Melbourne, before ultimately coming undone 7-6 5-7 6-2.
With the first set going all the way to a tie-break, the pair couldn’t be separated until Houdet managed to finally break the 2016 Australian Open winner and take it 10-8.
But with little separating the two players once again in the second, Reid managed to turn the screw to force a deciding set by breaking the Frenchman to wrap up the set 7-5.
However, Houdet, a four-time Paralympic medallist, upped the momentum in the third, breaking Reid in the first game before going on to take the third 6-2.
Fellow Brit Alfie Hewett lost 6-1 6-4 against Japan’s Shingo Kunieda.
The current US Open champion had never got past the quarter-final stage in Melbourne and will have to wait another year for a chance at glory as reigning champion Kunieda remained on course to secure a tenth Australian Open singles crown.
Meanwhile, in the quad wheelchair singles, three-time Paralympic medallist Andy Lapthorne lost his first group match 6-1 4-6 6-4 to world number two David Wagner.
Wagner eased to the opening set, but testament to Lapthorne’s endeavour managed to break the triple Paralympic doubles champion in the second to force a decider.
But an inch-perfect display from Wagner turned the game on its head in the third to take a 4-2 lead and he never relinquished his position to make the perfect start to his campaign.
Elsewhere, double Paralympic bronze medallist Lucy Shuker missed out on securing a spot at the Australian Open semi-finals for a third time with a straight set defeat to Diedre de Groot.
The 22-year-old Dutchwomen, ranked number one in the world, proved too strong for the Brit and clinched a 6-0 6-0 victory.
Medal hopes are still alive in Melbourne with Lapthorne, Hewett, Reid and Shuker all involved in tomorrow’s doubles competition.
First Lapthorne has the chance to seal a sixth Australian Open doubles title as he takes on home favourites Dylan Alcott and Heath Davidson alongside Wagner on the famous Margaret Court Arena.
Reid and Hewett face a men’s wheelchair doubles semi-final showdown against Houdet and Ben Weekes.
And Shuker pairs up with South African Kgothatso Montjane in the women’s wheelchair doubles semi-finals against Marjolein Buis and Sabine Ellerbrock.
25 January 2019
Shuker defeat ends British interest at Australian Open
24 January 2019
Lapthorne settles for second in quad doubles at Australian Open
22 January 2019
Australian Open Preview: Reid and Shuker lead GB charge
19 January 2019
Lapthorne and Reid miss out in Melbourne
17 January 2019
Reid chases more doubles glory at Melbourne Open
12 January 2019
Reid and Fernandez seal Bendigo Open doubles glory
11 January 2019
Reid pays tribute to Murray as he closes in on silverware in Australia
10 January 2019
Reid and Lapthorne advance in Australia
9 January 2019