Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid to play in all-British final at Queen's Club
By Gemma-Louise Stevenson
Last Updated: 22/06/19 9:50pm
Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid will yet again make history when they go head to head in the wheelchair final of the Fever-Tree Championships at Queen's Club on Sunday.
Hewett and Reid both remain in contention to do the double after also coming through their doubles semi-final against Gaetan Menguy and Frederic Cattaneo in straight sets 6-2 6-0 on Saturday.
There's not many people who can say they have beaten Sweden's Stefan Olsson in a competitive match on grass - in fact there's only one man who can, and now he can say he has done it twice - in the 2016 Wimbledon final and here at the 2019 tournament.
Reid was the first Brit to make it through to the singles final at Queen's after a match lasting over two hours saw him come from a set down to defeat Olsson 4-6 6-3 7-5, ending the two-time Wimbledon champion's almost two-year unbeaten run on grass.
Speaking to Sky Sports after his semi-final victory Reid said: "It feels really good to get the win. Stefan's shown over the last couple of years just how good he is on this surface so it was always going to be a big challenge to beat him here today but overall I'm really happy."
Shortly after that, Hewett completed yet another match in under an hour to book his place in the singles final, coming out on top against fellow Brit Dermot Bailey in straight set 6-2 6-3.
"It feels really good to be in the final - it was a tough game and I don't think played as good quality tennis as yesterday but I'm happy to come through," Hewett said.
"Even though the matches and rallies do seem to be shorter on grass than on hard courts, grass is definitely more demanding to push on, it really feels like it's less time but double the amount of work when you're on there."
Fancy a slice?
It's a shot we see used time and time again on grass, because it can be so lethal on the surface, and it's a shot that we have seen both of the Brits use to their advantage over this week at Queen's.
Before his semi-final encounter with Olsson, the dominant grass-court player of the tour for so long, Reid had a plan - take time off the ball, get his opponent moving and use his own skill with this shot to try and get the win - and when Reid had confidence in the execution of this on court, you could see that his Swedish opponent was having to work hard to find the answers.
"When I committed to the style of play I wanted it worked really well," the world No 8 said. "There were spells where I backed off a bit and didn't really trust my shots giving Stefan a lot more time on the ball and allowing him to dictate the play so I think it's just a case of backing my self more often going forward."
While the Reid versus Hewett singles head to head is one we have seen played out a fair few times at tournaments over the last couple of years, including at Grand Slams and the last Paralympic Games in Rio back in 2016, it's never happened before on grass.
"Yeah we've spent a lot of time together on grass on the same side of the net and been quite successful but we've never been on opposite sides so it's going to be really interesting and I'm very excited," world No 3 Hewett added.
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