A mix of British and International Rio Paralympians head the entry list for the Preston Indoor Wheelchair Tennis Tournament as the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour returns to South Ribble Tennis Centre from 16th – 19th February.
Marc McCarroll, Louise Hunt and Antony Cotterill are among a strong home challenge in the men’s, women’s and quad categories respectively.
They are joined by world No. 25 Gaetan Menguy from France and 2015 National Champion and world No.41 Dermot Bailey, both leading contenders for the men’s singles.
Louise Hunt will face strong opposition in the women’s draw, with four of the world’s top 20 lining up, including top seed and world No.10 Kgothatso Montjane from South Africa and the Netherlands’ Michaela Spaanstra as second seed.
Dana Mathewson from the USA completes the quartet of top 20 players competing for the women’s title, whilst 2015 and 2016 National Champion Lauren Jones will also be going for glory at the ITF 3 level tournament.
British hopes in the quad division lie with Rio Paralympian Antony Cotterill and 2015, 2016 National Champion James Shaw and World no. 34 Richard Green. They are part of a draw packed full of international players, including Australian Heath Davidson, fresh from competing in his first Grand Slam tournament at the Australian Open at the end of January.
Kirsty Thomson, Tennis Foundation Tournament Director said: “We are delighted to have such a strong entry coming to Preston this year. We look forward to welcoming a large contingent of international players to the North West, including some Rio Paralympians and we are hoping for a great four days of competition.”
The event is being held at South Ribble Tennis Centre for the eleventh time, with a number of the players also competing at the Bolton Indoor Tournament the following week (21st-25th February) as the North West is treated to two weeks of world class wheelchair tennis.
Peter Dodd, Chair of South Ribble Community Leisure Ltd, said “With the fantastic facilities at South Ribble Tennis and Fitness Centre, South Ribble has become a very popular location with tennis players of all abilities. The Preston Indoor Wheelchair Tennis Tournament has become established on our event calendar for many years and I am sure that we are in for another exciting week of top quality tennis. Entry is free of charge to spectators, and the Centre lends itself to easy access for viewing, parking and catering – what better way to spot the stars of the future!”
Follow all the news and draws from the tournament here.