Top-ranked South African male wheelchair tennis player Evans Maripa has won the USN Bolton Arena doubles title, together with Stefan Olsson from Sweden, in Bolton, England on Saturday.
The pair played together for only the second time, following their team debut at the 2016 SA Open where they reached the doubles semi-finals.
The champions dispatched Daniel Caverzaschi (ESP) and Maikel Scheffers (NED), with a dazzling 6-3 6-1 in the final round of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) level 2 event on the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour 2017, their first doubles title for the season.
‘Despite losing my singles quarter-final, I’m super happy that Stefan and I were able to take the doubles title and this victory will definitely boost my morale throughout the season,’ commented Maripa.
In the men’s singles event, the 26-year-old Maripa easily disposed of Ruairi Logan from Britain 6-2 6-2 in the opening round, but was denied a semi-final spot by his doubles partner Olsson when the world No7 ended the Limpopo star’s run with a 6-3 6-3 win in the quarter-finals.
Prior to the USN Bolton Arena, Maripa participated in the ABN AMRO World Tournament in Rotterdam, Netherlands, where he reached the quarter-final round in the singles and doubles events.
The world No14 impressed when he caused a huge upset by demolishing the world No11 Tom Egberink from the Netherlands with a stunning 6-1 0-6 6-1 thriller to reach the quarter-final round, but was knocked out in the last eight by world No1 Stephane Houdet from France.
Picture of Maripa in action during his opening round singles match, courtesy of Mark Robinson/Getty Images