11/25/2019 | News release | Archived content
The men's and women's top seeds ended their 2019 campaigns with victory in their respective finals at the UNIQLO Wheelchair Doubles Masters, while there were brand new champions crowned in the quad doubles fina at the USTA National Camps in Orlando, Florida USA.
Davidson and Vink complete quad doubles victory
The newest additions to the UNIQLO Wheelchair Doubles Masters roll of honour were Australia's Heath Davidson and Niels Vink of the Netherlands, whose 4-6 7-5 6-2 victory in the quad doubles final came at the end of just their second tournament together as a partnership.
The final also saw them reverse the outcome of their pool match against the Korean-Japanese partnership of Kyu-Seung Kim and Koji Sugeno, who'd completed the round-robin phase of the competition undefeated.
Kim and Sugeno led 3-1 and 5-3 in the decider before finally snatching the opening set but were unable to take advantage of a 5-3 second set lead and Davidson and Vink claimed the last four games to keep themselves in the title hunt.
Davidson and Vink then won five of the last six games of the match for their biggest career success to date, avenging their 7-6(6) 6-3 loss to Kim and Sugeno in their round-robin match earlier in the week
'It feels amazing,' said Vink who, at the age of 16, became the youngest winner of the Doubles Masters quad title. 'It was cooler than the other day, so that was nice.'
'We played reasonably well. The first two sets we were up and down a little bit and I was really down in the second set,' said Davidson. 'Niels pretty much fought through my shocking tennis and won it on his own, essentially. And in the third set we just started playing tennis. We were free and showed that when we're both playing well we're tough to beat.'
Houdet and Peifer complete hat-trick
Stephane Houdet and Nicolas Peifer made it three Doubles Masters victories together in four years in the men's doubles final, with Houdet taking his own personal tally of Doubles Masters titles to seven with five different partners since 2007.
At the end of a season that unusually featured no Grand Slam doubles title for Houdet and Peifer, the defending Doubles Masters champions made a sensational start to the men's doubles final. They dropped just the fifth game as they raced to the opening set in just 35 minutes.
Unbeaten in their round-robin pool, Gerard and Olsson had more success early in the second set, but the top seeds regained the momentum to reel off the last four games in succession, claiming their third Doubles Masters title together after 68 minutes.
'In the pool match Jo served so well and I think he won his serve almost every time. It was very difficult to break him and Stefan came to the net a lot, but it was only the round-robin and so it wasn't such a big deal,' said Houdet. 'Today we had no unforced errors, Nico was very, very powerful and we took the lead at the start of the match and never lost it.'
Rio 2016 gold medallists Houdet and Peifer produced the kind of performance that suggested that there's plenty more to come in 2020, when they will hope to make it back-to-back Paralympic titles.
'I'm very, very happy to win this tournament again with Stephane. We were very solid and very focussed and we did exactly what we had to do,' said Peifer. 'Tokyo 2020, we will be there.'
De Groot and van Koot victorious in women's doubles
At the end of a season that has seen them complete the calendar Grand Slam in women's doubles together and concede just two match losses throughout the entire year, Diede de Groot and Aniek van Koot became the ninth different all-Dutch partnership to win the Doubles Masters women's title after beating Brits Lucy Shuker and Jordanne Wihley 6-2 6-2.
After beating Shuker and Whiley 6-1 6-1 in their round-robin pool match earlier in the week, De Groot and Van Koot built a 4-1 lead early in the title decider and took the opening set after earning three breaks of serve to just one for the British partnership in the third game of the match.
The Dutch top seeds then converted all four of their break point opportunities in the second set to wrap up victory, having denied the Brits the opportunity to get back to within a game after a string of deuces in a long seventh game.
'It's been an honour to play here again at the Masters. Singles obviously didn't work out well for me this week and I just came back from an injury, but to play a bit more relaxed here with Diede is an absolute pleasure,' said Van Koot.
'I think the fact that we have lost only two matches this season shows that we have grown into the game become a lot stronger together. It's been a good year for us and I'm very proud of that. We're still not entirely sure if this is the combination for Tokyo but I do hope so because I'm thoroughly enjoying it.'
'Aniek won it with a different partner last year, so I'm very happy I could win it with her this year,' said De Groot, reflecting on the previous two editions of the Doubles Masters when both she and Van Koot earned victory partnering compatriot Marjolein Buis. 'We've been playing well all year, but especially here you need to be good in every match because It's not just round-by round like in the other tournaments. You have to be very consistent and I think we did that.'