SOUTH AFRICAN WILD CARD EVANS MARIPA UPSETS WORLD NO.8 SANADA TO ADVANCE IN ROTTERDAM
South African top wheelchair tennis ace Evans Maripa surprised more than a few people with his upset win over world no.8 Japanese Takashi Sanada at the ABN AMRO World Wheelchair Tennis tournament in Ahoy Rotterdam, Netherlands on Wednesday.
The 25-year-old demolished his best friend and doubles partner Sanada 4-6 6-4 6-2 to record his third win against the Japanese and to set up a quarterfinal clash against world no.5 Gordon Reid of Britain.
“This is a huge win for me and I knew I had to work hard after being awarded the wild card. This serves as a great motivation to keep pushing and keeping my dreams alive of breaking into the top 10. I look forward to Thursday’s challenge against Gordon Reid who I have never beaten in the two encounters we met. So I will be hoping to turn the tables”, said overwhelmed Maripa.
“After going down in the doubles with Sanada I knew I had to make a difference in the singles and I am very excited and proud of my performance”, added Maripa.
The No. 16-ranked South African was awarded a wild card entry by tournament director Esther Vergeer, completing the roster of participants for the top flight world tournament.
Maripa showed a steadiness and consistency that the more experienced world no.8 lacked on Wednesday.
“Evans played a very solid match, he was very focused and after he lost the opening set he raised his level of play and took the other two sets and eventually won the match. We are very proud of him and hope he keeps working hard. This was a big win for him, another top 10 scalp and a great performance”, said his coach Holger Losch.
Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and Airports Company South Africa Partnership:
The Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) is the official sponsor of Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and the sport of wheelchair tennis. Airports Company South Africa has contributed no less than R36-million to date and has committed to a continued investment in the sport as its flagship Corporate Social Investment programme.