21 Mar World Wheelchair Team Cup Qualifier Results
Wheelchair World team Cup – Vilamoura March 2017
MATCH REPORT DAY 3
Day 3 saw the Irish take on Portugal in a playoff for 3rd and 4th in Group 3 of the Wheelchair World Team Cup Qualification Tournament. The Portuguese had a Top 100 player in their ranks so went into the match as strong favourites
Stafford Lynn soon realised this as his opponent Carlos Leitao hit 4 forehand winners in the first game to break Stafford and then unleashed 2 aces to seal the 2nd. Stafford started hit with more length and try to put Carlos on the defensive more often which won him the 3rd game and put him 0-40 up in the fourth. However a couple of unforced errors long and another service winner cost Stafford his break points and he soon found himself 4-1 down. The match continued in this way with Stafford getting ahead in many of the games but not able to close them out before he lost 6-3 6-1 in 1 ½ hours
Next up was Garreth Greene against World no 85 Joao Melo . Garreth showed straight away he wasn’t intimidated by his opponents high ranking by hitting 3 winners in the first game and taking it to love . Garreth’s form from the previous day was nowhere in sight as he continued to hit winners from both sides and making very few unforced errors as he took a 4-1 lead. His opponent steadied the ship a little but Garreth was in no mood to let him back in and closed the set out 6-3.
He immediately broke to go 1-0 up in the 2nd and then led 40-15 in his service game before his opponent managed to claw his way back to 1-1. Garreth’s opponent then started to move better and seemed to be getting to more of Garreth balls and suddenly Garreth’s form dipped a little as he got broken again and found himself 3-1 and then 4-2 down in the 2nd set. Again at this point Garreth gritted his teeth and started to find outright backhand winners as he went on a run of 3 games to lead 5-4. Finally after going 40-15 down in the next game he reeled off three winners in a row and completed the victory fittingly with a backhand winner down the line to win 6-3 6-4
So in the deciding doubles Garreth and Stafford faced Carlos again but his time with Jaoa Sanona. By now conditions were very tricky with a strong breeze blowing across the courts. The Portuguese pair both served very well with the wind and kept the Irish pair routed to the baseline as the took control of the match winning the first 4 games despite the Irish pair having points to win each one of them ! The match now started to even up with Stafford starting to get to the net more regularly and brought the score to 5-3 before another long game which the Portuguese nicked to win the set 6-3.
More long games followed until with the score at 2-2 there was a 30 minute game containing 12 deuces and numerous break points before the Portuguese managed to hold on to it to go 3-2 up . This appeared to knock the stuffing out of the Irish lads as the next 2 games were lost relatively quickly but at 5-2 they came back again saving 2 match points to get it to 5-3 and then at 15 – 40 had 2 chances to get to 5-4. However both were saved and then 3 further match points saved before finally a backhand was netted and the match was lost 6-3 6-3 in 2 hrs and 40 minutes
As a result Ireland finished 13th overall in the event
IRELAND 1 V 2 PORTUGAL
STAFFORD LYNN LOST TO CARLOS LEITAO 6-3 6-1
GARRETH GREENE BEAT JAOA MELO 6-3 6-4
GARRETH GREENE / STAFFORD LYNN LOST TO CARLOS LEITAO/ JAOA SANONA 6-3 6-3
Wheelchair World team Cup – Vilamoura March 2017
MATCH REPORT DAY 2
Day 2 saw the Irish take on Romania who were fresh from victory over Portugal on Day 1 and boasted 3 players in the Top 200 in the World
Stafford Lynn again got the Irish off and wheeling versus the World 178 ranked Romanian Stancu Ionut Filisan . Stafford was quick out of the blocks breaking his opponent in the first game and going 30-0 up in his service game – however his opponent hit back with some precise backhands and consistent forehands to take a 4-1 lead . Stafford then held and again led 40-0 in the next game but let it slip and the Romanian won the set 6-2 despite Stafford winning almost as many points as him.
The second set was a similar story with Stafford attacking and volleying at every opportunity and the Romanian defending and manoeuvring around the court at speed to negate Stafford and unfortunately the set ended up with the same result 6-2 despite a good performance from Stafford
Next up was Garreth Greene against World no 129 Miaha Gaita. Garreth’s opponent was another consistent player with not much to hurt Garreth but Garreth struggled with his own game making uncharacteristic errors with all his shots . The first set slipped away 6-1 and Garreth quickly found himself 3-1 down in the 2nd set also. However despite playing poorly Garreth started finding ways to win points and dragged himself back into the match at 4-4 . His opponent then played his best game of the match serving 2 aces and hitting a backhand winner to go 5-4 up before a long final game which went to 4 deuces before Garreth finally netted a forehand to go down 6-1 6-4
In the Doubles Gerry Milligan made his debut in this year’s World team Cup with Garreth and the tactics of Gerry piling forward and Garreth playing aggressively from the baseline rattled their opponents as they took at 2-0 lead. However the weather then took a hand with a 20 min rain delay where the Romanians regrouped and took the next 5 games to go 5-2 up . Garreth and Gerry came straight back to make it 5-4 before losing a tight 10th game of the set and the set 6-4. The Romanians went 1-0 up in the third before an almighty shower sent everyone racing for cover. After an hour break and a lot of brushing of water of the courts the players went back on in drizzly conditions but the Irish pair couldn’t get back to their previous level and lost the set 6-1
Tomorrow sees Ireland take on Portugal in the 3rd/ 4th play off in their group
IRELAND 0 V 3 ROMANIA
STAFFORD LYNN LOST TO STANCU IONUT FILISAN 6-2 6-2
GARRETH GREENE LOST TO MIAHA GAITA 6-1 6-4
GARRETH GREENE / GERRY MILLIGAN LOST TO STANCU IONUT FILISAN/ ANTON CIPRIAN 6-4 6-1
MATCH REPORT DAY 1
The Irish Wheelchair Tennis Team have been handed a tough draw being placed in a Group of 4 with 4th Seeds Hungary , 6th Seeds Romania and 10th seeds Portugal. The draw is a round robin format after which the top 3 teams in the group will go on to play similar finishers in other groups to decide final positions.
Day 1 saw the Irish take on Hungary who boasts a top 50 ranked player and a second who was at one stage ranked Top 20.
First up for Ireland was Stafford Lynn against an opponent currently ranked 104 Laszlo Farkas. Stafford got off to a slow start against a fast moving opponent and soon found himself 6-0 down. However things started to improve as Stafford’s serve improved and he fought his way to 4-3 down before a long service game was lost and he went down 6-0 6-3
Irish No 1 and World Ranked 192 Garreth Greene was up next against Hungary’s Roland Nemeth world ranked 48. Once again Garreth was slow out of the blocks before realising that he could compete with the Top 50 opponent at 3-0 down Garreth started to relax and hit winners just as often as his opponent getting back to 4-3 down , an epic hold followed to make it 4-4 and then 3 break points were missed as the Hungarian hung on to his serve for 5-4. A double fault and an uncharacteristic backhand error caused Garreth to lose the set but clearly the match was still on!
The second set started in similar tight fashion with 3 holds before the Hungarian took advantage of a small lapse from Garreth to go 3-1 up. More breakpoints came and went for Garreth as he tried to keep the match alive but he eventually succumbed 6-1 after saving 4 match points.
In the final Doubles Garreth and Stafford were troubled by a rain delay and were once again slow to get started but after losing a quick first set fought hard in the 2nd only going down 6-4 despite having 3 points to take the second set to 5-5.
IRELAND 0 V HUNGARY 3
STAFFORD LYNN LOST TO LASZLO FARKAS 6-0 6-3
GARRETH GREENE LOST TO ROLAND NEMETH 6-4 6-1
STAFFORD LYNN AND GARRETH GREENE LOST TO LASZLO FARKAS AND GYORGY BOVIER 6-0 6-4
Report from Jim Watt Team captain