South Africa’s leading women’s wheelchair tennis ace, Kgothatso Montjane claimed her own slice of history at the weekend with partner Macarena Cabrillana, as she notched up her second US Open doubles crown at St. Louis in the United States.
The South African-Chilean duo downed Dana Mathewson (USA) and Lucy Shuker (GBR) with a stunning 6-2 4-6 6-4 win to record their major doubles title on their debut as a team.
The 30-year-old Montjane is hitting her stride in the history books, with the Limpopo player the first woman from South Africa to lift the US Open doubles trophy and her fifth International Tennis Federation (ITF) Super Series title.
‘I can’t explain with words what this win means to me, I was hoping to make it a double and win the singles title but I am very happy with what I have achieved,’ said Montjane.
In the singles event, the world number nine cruised through to the last four without dropping a set but was outplayed by Britain’s Lucy Shuker 6-3 7-6 (6).
Meanwhile, in the quads event, South African world number three Lucas Sithole was overpowered and prevented from collecting his first US Open Super Series title by American former world number one David Wagner. Sithole was eliminated in the finals on Sunday by the defending champion Wagner 7-6(4) 6-4.
In the men’s tournament, Evans Maripa faced a tough quarter-final round challenge when he went up against former world number one Japanese Shingo Kunieda. The world No17, Maripa fought but could not match Kunieda’s fantastic form, losing 6-4 6-2.
Wheelchair Tennis South Africa (WTSA) General Manager Karen Losch said: ‘As it is one of our aims at WTSA to develop champions, we are very proud of the achievements of our athletes and we continue to give them support.
‘We are delighted that they have already taken a further step into the sport and in doing so have become role models for future generations.”
Picture of Montjane courtesy of Reg Caldecott