Friday, 08 September 2017 11:55

Gordon and Alife make history

Written by Marshall Thomas

HELENSBURGH'S Gordon Reid and partner Alfie Hewett made a unique piece of sporting history yesterday when they won the first ever wheelchair tennis match to be played on the new Arthur Ashe Court.

This victory earned them a place in Saturday’s men’s doubles final at the US Open, the last Grand Slam of the year.

Two-time Wimbledon champions Gordon and Alfie took the last three games of the opening set and the last five game of the match to win their semi-final against Argentina’s Gustavo Fernandez and Shingo Kunieda of Japan 6-3, 6-2.

“It was incredible to have that opportunity. We really cherish that as wheelchair players," said Gordon, who was men’s doubles champion at the US Open in 2015 partnering Frenchman Stephane Houdet.

"Australia at the start of the year having the quad final on Rod Laver and then Wimbledon putting us on a stadium court and now here, not even one of the finals, but one of the first matches was on Ashe.

"So I think that’s showing the respect that wheelchair tennis is gaining.”

The pair have reached their third Grand Slam final of the year together. They also reversed the result of their semi-final against Fernandez and Kunieda at last week’s USTA Championships Super Series in St. Louis.

“It really is the stuff that dreams are made of, to play on Ashe. Hopefully, it’s not the last time," he added.

“I thought we played well. There were a couple of dips in it. We did the right things at the right time to win.

"I think maybe everyone was a little bit nervous playing on the big court and a Grand Slam match. It was an important match, but I think we dealt with it the best."

The second-seeds will now play top seeds Houdet and Nicolas Peifer in tomorrow’s final, having finished runners-up to the French duo at Roland Garros and then beating them for the second year in a row in the Wimbledon final.

Gordon faces Belgium’s Joachim Gerard today in his bid to reach the semi-finals.

Read 152 times Last modified on Tuesday, 10 October 2017 16:14

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