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French Open: Alfie Hewett through to wheelchair singles final at Roland Garros

Alfie Hewett of Great Britain plays a forehand during his Men's Wheelchair Singles quarterfinals match against Stephane Houdet of France on day eleven of the 2020 French Open at Roland Garros on October 07, 2020 in Paris, France.
Image: Alfie Hewett reached his sixth Grand Slam singles final

Alfie Hewett reached his sixth Grand Slam singles final with victory over defending champion Gustavo Fernandez in the wheelchair singles at the French Open.

In a rematch of the 2017 final at Roland Garros, Norfolk's Hewett came through a very tight encounter, beating Argentine Fernandez 7-6 (7-5) 7-5 after an hour and 48 minutes.

"I think the passion today on court from me made it evident that I really wanted it because you see last year's result here against him haunted and stayed with me for a long while," Hewett told Sky Sports' Gemma-Louise Stevenson.

"I know Gustavo's very, very dominant on this surface so it was going to take something very good from myself to be able to get the win.

"I'm obviously very, very happy to be so resilient out there when I had that belief on court and felt like I could go down in the game, whether that be 40-0, 30-0 or 40-15 and come back every single time, it meant a lot."

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Andy Lapthorne of Great Britain celebrates during the Men's Singles Quad Wheelchair semifinal match against David Wagner of United States on day twelve of the 2020 French Open at Roland Garros on October 08, 2020 in Paris, France.
Image: Andy Lapthorne made it through to the final in the quad division

Hewett, who was beaten in the US Open final last month, is bidding for a fourth Grand Slam singles title.

In the final he will take on Belgian Joachim Gerard, who knocked out Hewett's New York conqueror Shingo Kunieda in the last four.

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Hewett will go into the clash buoyed by a doubles victory over Gerard, with the 22-year-old and Scot Gordon Reid beating Gerard and Frederic Cattaneo 6-3 7-6 (7-2) in the semi-finals.

Reid and Hewett have the chance to complete the clean sweep of Grand Slam titles in doubles in 2020 having already won in Melbourne and New York.

In the quad division, Britain's Andy Lapthorne is also through to the final after a 6-3 2-6 6-3 victory over American David Wagner.

Andy Lapthorne of Great Britain plays a shot during the Men's Singles Quad Wheelchair semifinal match against David Wagner of United States on day twelve of the 2020 French Open at Roland Garros on October 08, 2020 in Paris, France.

The winner-takes-all knockout nature of the quad singles draw here in France differs from the traditional round-robin format in Australia and the USA.

But it is one that Lapthorne feels suits him and how he approaches matches.

He said, "I massively prefer playing knock-out tennis, it's what we play week in, week out. It rewards you for your ranking with your seeding, which actually means something.

"The rumour going around is that we are going to increase to eight at a lot of the Slams next year so I'm all for that - the more quads here the better. And if we can start playing draws of eight, knockout, the same as the other two divisions that would be massive for us.

"The more people people who can get behind that and speed that process up, the better. We have enough depth now to definitely have eight player and have two top seeds."

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