Three Brits on the Tennis Foundation’s Wheelchair Tennis World Class Programme – Andy Lapthorne, Antony Cotterill and Lucy Shuker – contest the 2018 BNP Paribas Open de France, the last Super Series event on the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour before July’s British Open.
Andy Lapthorne booked his place in the quad singles quarterfinals as the Brit challenge got underway on the second morning of competition in France, while the day ended with Lucy Shuker partnering the USA’s Dana Mathewson to the women’s doubles semi-finals.
However, there was singles disappointment for Antony Cotterill, while Shuker narrowly bowed out of the women’s singles against Colombia’s Angelica Bernal.
World No. 3 and second seed Lapthorne took 64 minutes to defeat Korean former world No.6 Kyu-Seung Kim 6-3, 6-3, setting up hopes of an all-British quarter-final. Those hopes heightened as Cotterill came back from 2-0 down to take the opening set against the USA’s Greg Hasterok 6-4, but at 4-1 down in the second set Cotterill had to retire due to illness, meaning that Lapthorne will now face Hasterok in a Super Series quarter-final for their second successive meeting. Lapthorne extended his record against Hasterok to three matches unbeaten when winning their quarter-final at the 2016 US Open USTA Championships in St. Louis.
Lapthorne and Cotterill are second seeds for the quad doubles and have a bye into the last eight. They face Japan’s Mika SIshikawa and Mituteru Moroishi on Thursday.
Second seeds Shuker and Mathewson finished the day on a winning note after teaming up to beat Bernal and Argentina’s Maria Florencia Moreno 6-1, 6-2 in the women’s doubles semi-finals. They play Italy’s Giulia Capocci and Kgothatso Montjane of South Africa later in the week for a place in the final.
Earlier, Shuker very nearly completed a remarkable first set turnaround against Bernal, recovering from 5-0 down to get to within a game of the Colombian at 5-4. However, with Shuker having saved multiple set points Bernal eventually took the set. Shuker gained momentum in the second set and came back from 3-1 down to take a 5-4 lead in the third and final set, but victory eluded the British No. 1 as Bernal progressed 6-4, 2-6 7-5.
Lucy Shuker carries British hopes in the women’s singles and faces Colombia’s Angelica Bernal in a tough opening women’s singles match. With just four of the eight women’s first round matches scheduled for Tuesday’s first day of competition, Shuker’s match against Bernal will most likely take place on Wednesday’s second day of play.
Andy Lapthorne and Antony Cotterill both have first round byes in the quad singles, but are drawn in the same section of the draw and therefore would meet in the quarter-finals if both win their opening matches.