Men's Wheelchair Doubles Final - Part 2 Wimbledon

Men's Wheelchair Doubles Final - Part 2

Clare Balding introduces continued coverage of the final of the men's wheelchair doubles, as Stephane Houdet and Nicolas Peifer take on Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid.

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My dad is perfect! -- that is perfect. Wimbledon champion again!


It is a much brighter afternoon and we are all set to go again with this


wheelchair men's doubles final, three hours after the rain drove


them off cod three on the other side of Court One. We are ready to resume


again. The contest between the French top seeds, the favourites and


the British defending champions. The French Stephane Houdet and Nicholas


Peifer and Gordon Reid and Alfie Hewett. And when the rains came, it


was the Britons who were fighting their way back into this final,


having lost the first set on a tie-break, 7-6, right at the start


of the second set, they have taken an early lead, breaking the server


of the French. The 25-year-old left hand from Glasgow there. The men's


singles champion here last year, he won the doubles as well with Alfie


Hewett. They do not lack support. They are in a right old battle


today, against Houdet and Peifer. Enjoying wheelchair tennis again at


Wimbledon is one of our best ever wheelchair tennis players, who won


ten Grand Slam titles. He got ten Paralympic medals as well. This has


been a very good contest so far. Good afternoon. It is poised to be


really exciting. Anglo-French contest again. I don't know if any


of you remember from the Olympics last year, this was one of the


defining matches, these players played out, and the British player


unfortunately took silver and the French took gold and I watched that


and it was so thrilling. I have got a feeling, this is gearing up for


that as well. It is also a repeat of the final last year, that went to


three sets. We will see. Here is Alfie Hewett.


It is about how quickly every player can get started. When they look at


this as a new match or a continuation of one? A new view, a


new vision. Brilliant recovery. From Gordon


Reid. His singles fight ended on Thursday. He is working so hard to


hold on to his doubles crown. The British player will be pleased about


that miss by Houdet. The Norfolk teenager there, he is


from Great Yarmouth. That is a really significant hold,


coming back out after the rain delayed at dues. -- deuce. I was


thinking which players would come out stronger. Gordon just came out


there, walloped a high forehand out wide. 2-0 up, second set. Just long.


Had a look to the umpire who is Brazilian. They do have Hawk-Eye on


Court number three. They have decided that was not worth


challenging. Wonderful touch. He will have to do


a bit more of that, I think. That is the kind of form that won him


there's singles title here last summer and won him Olympic gold in


Rio. I think you will try and see Gordon and Alfie try and mix it up a


bit more, come closer to the net. Rather than both staying back.


Houdet is doing that now. Break point against the serve of


Nicholas Peifer. The 26-year-old who lives just outside Paris,


Versailles. That is a rather tame way to tackle


the second break, but it has been a wonderful start. A wonderful start.


Post resumption for Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid. You're aware, Peter,


that lots of people now, enjoying wheelchair doubles for the first


time this afternoon, bring us up to speed with the rules and


regulations, pretty much what you see in the able-bodied game. The


rules are the same, you are allowed the second bounce, the first round


must be in the confines of the Court and the second can be anywhere. In


doubles, that means they can use the whole court and you can see them


even going into the canvas on the sides, the roof etc. If the ball


hits the chair before bouncing then you lose the point, if you get the


ball in the wheels, you must not fall out. If you do it, it is a let


and if you keep doing it, you lose a point. Wheelchair tennis is the same


as tennis, tennis is tennis. And here are two of the best that this


version of the sport has had to offer, Nicholas Peifer and Stephane


Houdet. A Frenchman took the title that day at Roland Garros, on clay.


This time, we are on grass. The British duo working hard to take us


into a third deciding set, 3-0. Fantastic. Great reaction by Alfie


Hewett there. Peifer took that out of the sky. Straight into the


netting zone and Alfie Hewett, backhand, reversed down the line for


the winner. Judged that perfectly. Lovely


languid forehand there. Won the Paralympic title by beating


the bloke who he is playing with today. Alfie Hewett took the silver


and Gordon Reid took the gold. And right now, Houdet and Peifer have


not got going since the rain delay. They are looking a bit sluggish. The


British players were a set down and they had to come out firing. We


could go to the third set, but you can never write off the French,


especially Houdet. Stephane Houdet, 46 now. Continuing


to play at such an incredible level, he is really one of the old soldiers


of the sport, it is a former world number one. He is just behind the


current world number one, Gustavo Fernandez.


It is good if your partner is hitting a deep shot and one of the


tactics is to follow him in and get close to the net. Again, another


good shot by Hewett, he is been the aggressor at the moment. -- he is


being the aggressor. That is a good drop shot. On that


green grass, the ball guys, well controlled forehand drop shot. ?1,


two bounce and then it dies. -- ?1. They got the cover song quickly when


it started to rain around half past 12. Heavy conditions this morning.


They will not be playing any quicker now, those lush green patches are


big targets for the drop shot. This, for the Britons, is an opportunity


to go 5-0 up and surely be on the verge of taking this into a third


deciding set. Good try by Gordon. He saw Peifer


rolling in and coming up to the service line and thought he would do


a high lob over the top and he would have had an open court for him to


come back. He has been one of the great flag


flyers for this board for so long, before that he was a flag flyer for


golf and he has never given up the trick of wearing gloves when he


plays sport. Actually a world number one golfer, he is multitalented,


Stephane Houdet. It will have helped him, when the rain came, but gloves,


giving him a bit more grip on the tyres.


O, they are making a mock up of it. Look at the Houdet. What are you


doing? A great get by Gordon, but look. Not a lot of sympathy.


Stephane Houdet is a qualified vet in Paris.


He was giving Peifer are talking to as well. Trying to get his head up,


trying to get him to concentrate. It was a good return but Peifer sat


still on the baseline. It was a feature of this final


before the rain came. They were just a little bit more imaginative in


their court positions. They are gambling at the net a bit more.


You are right. And Alfie is pushing in and putting pressure on Peifer.


Peifer is making the errors. Just to dispel my theory he goes and


does a superb backhand crosscourt down the sideline! Hugely talented


these players. This is the longest game of the match.


You can see Hewett was moving his chair all the time on the return of


serve. But to no avail, Houdet did a wonderful serve. It is not the pace,


it is the placement. That was a great smash. Hewett


missed three of those in the first set. I am a bit confused as to why


two French blokes are talking to each other in English on the court.


But there was no confusion about that smash from Alfie Hewett.


They have not had a challenge yet. They are enjoying using Hawk-Eye for


the first time. They are on the board for the first


time in this second set. It is wonderful that the sport is


getting this exposure, Peter. You were one of those who in the early


days went to Athens and Beijing when the BBC covered this life. You were


setting the pace down. But the game and the sport has moved on. At the


moment these four are at the forefront and from a British


perspective and an's prospective Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid are


doing great. Yes, they are fantastic ambassadors. They are pushing the


boundaries of tennis as well. It is fantastic to be on the BBC and to be


at Wimbledon. We never expected that two decades ago. The technology has


moved on as well with the chairs and the rackets. It is great to see.


What are the chairs made out of? Most of them are detaining,


extremely light. Bespoke products. You do not have to have a canister


to play tennis, but it does help. This is Alfie Hewett. Serving at 4-1


in the second set. How well did he play? He is having a


wonderful month or so. He made a bit of wheelchair tennis history in


Paris last month when he became the first Briton to win the French Open


singles, beating Gustavo Fernandez in the final at Roland Garros, the


world number one. They also make him IPC athlete of the month. He has had


a great quarter here. You can see it in his play, he is feeling


confident, happy and fit. They started to play for the first


time in 2007. It was the first time Wimbledon invited wheelchair


players. They had been playing at the other Grand Slams on the hard


courts for a while. It has got to be a timely challenge,


that is the phrase. For the Brazilian referee that was not


timely. In the mind of Stephane Houdet it


was timely, but on we go. Alfie Hewett has come out inspired


since the rain delay. The young man from Norwich. He is guiding this


British duo towards the third set. That is how you do a reverse


backhand top-spin across court in wheelchair tennis.


Went as high as number two, the Frenchman in the world. This is at


number five. The sport is being played at its


best at the moment at the best tournament in the world.


He is playing the tennis of his championships right now. The great


forehand return. Peifer had not moved from service position when the


ball went past him. Oh, it had to be. He was almost


sitting in the front row. That was outstanding. A flick of the wrist at


the end. Wow. That is the talent. There we go, some brilliance from


the Frenchman. Houdet on the left, Peifer on the


right. Houdet took to disability golf Festival after he had a crash


on his motorbike. He was a really good able-bodied junior tennis


player before the crash, became one of the more decorated tennis


players. He switched to tennis after meeting Johan Cruyff, his foundation


was a big supporter of wheelchair tennis. You'll find Johan Cruyff


doing juniors and competitions each year, all about the new blood,


bringing youngsters into the sport. The foundation is still hugely


virtual. -- hugely influential. That's where some of these players


have come from. The tennis foundation is doing good work as


well. There are working to get products into centres. British


wheelchair tennis is being driven in the right direction.


Gordon Reid looking to serve out the second set.


Gordon overrun that, he span round. And he span straight into the balls


so he couldn't really hit a very good shot. Houdet just came in and


hit it away for a winner. Looks like they're going to get


broken again, the British pair. Yes, the Britons who had led 5-1,


still lead 5-3. They still have the break of serve. It's getting just a


little tighter than they would have expected. That's when it's going to


be problems, especially for the British, because they need this


second set to go to a third and deciding set. Once more, Stephane


Houdet. There's been a change of momentum in


this second set. I think they got to 5-1 and a relaxed, took an effort


off the pedal. Hopefully that will galvanise them


into being a bit more positive. They got to keep the chairs moving. Keep


positive. The French roll to their bags and


the water and the towels having won the last three games and just giving


Hewett and Reid a little bit to chew on here. And it will be a test of


Alfie Hewett's new-found confidence, he's been working really hard, we


know, over the last few years, on the nerves. He'll happily admit that


on big occasions like this previously, he is still a teenager,


still only young, but the nerves would sometimes get the better of


him. He's got to, all of the work he's done over the next few minutes,


he's got to use that work he did with the sports psychologist. We've


been encouraging our juniors to go to big tournaments like the


Paralympics to taste and feel what the atmosphere and pressure is like.


He's been here before, he's played one Wimbledon, played the


Paralympics, one the silver medal there, just won his first Grand Slam


in France. He's getting used to this pressure. They're going to come out


and serve for the second set. The pressure is well and truly starting


to build. Right then, healthy, what have you got? -- Alfie? Serve this


and you will be in a third set. They were racking up the pace in


there and Alfie hit back to Peifer's line and gave him more as an angle


to hit out of the trams. Great shot by Gordon Reid. Houdet at


full strength didn't get to that. Right into the bottom corner.


Never a good time to do a double fault. Only the second in the final.


They'll get away with it. Maybe. Made up for his double-faulted with


a lovely backhand winner. That's what we used to call a daisy


cutter. Having led 5-1, it could be 5-5 very shortly.


That's brave, isn't it? A break point down.


That forehand, through his whole body weight into that.


That's cool and collected. Great fishing there. -- great pushing.


Bearing down the line. Tried his flashing backhand again,


didn't quite come off. The first half of this final, it's very often


that he is the barometer of the team, Alfie Hewett. There's a level


of consistency that we'd played at but Hewett can fluctuate, he's


playing like the player that was winning all those points once they


resumed half hour ago. You're right, and I think when


Hewett is aggressive and pushing and doing his flashing backhand is, Reid


places nice, level game, they start winning a string of points in a row.


This is starting to reach critical proportions from a British


perspective but well done to the French, they've charged their way


back into the spinal. They were 5-1 down a few -- into this final. They


were 5-1 down a few units ago and it seemed inevitable that there would


be a third set but it could still end here.


I love that shot. First bounce off the serve, move in. Wheeling right


over the baseline. Lean into the shot, which it away for a winner.


Houdet almost saw its trickling over. Didn't quite do it.


The damage was done when Hewett to Reid time to look where the gap was,


to maximise the damage. Having forced their way back in,


they suddenly drop their serve. You wonder just how good Alfie Hewett


could be if he is playing at the levels he is playing at the moment


as an 19-year-old. He has got so much more developing to do, so much


more to achieve. Yes, he has got a long way to go. The only problem is


you can get injuries. The boundaries have been pushed, but you have to


look after your body as well. He had an elbow injury and he is making his


way back from that. You do recover when you are younger, but to give


yourself longevity, you have to look after yourself. Also his tournament


planning has to be spot on. These are all full-time professionals now.


Absolutely, they go around the circuit. There are many tournaments


around the world. There is big prize money. Quite a bit of value on a


Wimbledon title. Gordon Reid has got a couple of them. He is about to


serve. It is the bigwigs.


CHEERING It is on the line. Arms down from


the baseline died. Peifer left that thinking Houdet was covering him.


As high as the quality of the tennis has been, the quality of the


challenging has been ropey. You need more practice, boys.


REFEREE: Game and second set. They won the title in the third set last


summer. They are into a third set here this summer. They are refusing


to give up their Wimbledon title. Hewett and Reid have taken us to a


decider. They are smiling actually. Just thinking they needed that. They


will settle a bit more now. That made them feel a bit more


comfortable. Of all the points, which ones catch your eyes. The ones


in yellow are the good points. First serves in, the best are from the


Britons. They are playing a bit more solid


and they will feel a bit more comfortable on the grass now. Alfie


has been coming in and switching that play on serve. As one is


serving, the other one comes in. The opponents have got to look for the


gap. It means a lot. He is so animated.


Gordon Reid meantime in the background has the look of a man who


knows there is still a lot of work to do to retain the title. He likes


Alfie getting excited. He pushes him along on court. Centre Court were to


mean Muguruza has just become the women's champion.


Getting the third set under way with new balls.


There have been one or two of those over the course of the day that he


would take back if he could. Houdet hit it from the top of the racket.


Not as secure in the overheads as he normally is.


All their friends and family are in town. Those who were not friends


before today will be very quick to become friends. That is what it is


about. Come and watch some wheelchair tennis and get a


masterclass in doubles from the top players. Being Wimbledon champion is


not something you get to do every day of your life.


They will be the first pair if they could ever retain their title. Alfie


Hewett. Got to keep the chair moving. Alfie


Hewett was a bit guilty just sitting there. He blocked his view.


Good change of direction by Hewett. A lovely backhand down the line.


It is a cool day in South West London today. Nowhere near the heat


we had in the first week. There is Stuart Wilkinson and Karen Ross from


the tennis foundation. Nowhere near as hot as the first


week. We have had that three hour rain break.


A final being played in two pass. The first part was definitely shaded


in French colours. Houdet and Peifer won the first set. Since the


resumption it has been the other way. That was a super serve. He has


got much more reach and look over the net and it gives him much more


angles to serve it to. Interesting to see one or two


interruptions over the last few minutes because of people in the


crowd moving around, late to take their seats. It is fascinating to


see how the tournament they will have in Milan goes in November which


will be played and experimental rules. One of the rules off the


court is people can come and go whenever they want. They do not have


to wait for the change of ends. If they want to get a hot dog and 0-40,


they can get a hot dog. Relax the game a bit, make it a bit more


user-friendly. In Rio last year Johnny Vegas walked onto Lucy


Shuker's court and sat there for about 15 minutes and no one said


anything. The best view of the court. How much were you distracted


by movement when you were in the crowd when you were playing? With


lots of noise and with lots of people, some people are very close


to you on court. When you are not completely focused you start looking


and seeing and hearing everything. Then it gets difficult. When you are


a it does not matter. There could be on court coaching by


headsets, no let's. No advantages, you just play a deciding point to


deuce. Meantime, back to the job in hand.


The men's wheelchair doubles final between the French pair, Stephane


Houdet and Nicolas Peifer, and the British pair, Alfie Hewett and


Gordon Reid. The history between these two pairs, it's a lengthy


history, it does not favour Hewett and Reid. This is the tenth occasion


they've met and they've only won twice. One of those twice was here


last year so it was a big one. But the bulk of the numbers asked -- are


stacked for the French. That was also when Alfie was growing into his


new-found status as he was coming up into the world rankings from the


juniors. He could probably take off of those away.


It reminded me, going back to coaching, our world team cup, like


the Davis Cup, we have coaches on court and one of the think they say


is wouldn't it be more interesting if they were able to change tactics


in the singles? Great tennis, he's got it back! Oh,


a disappointing end to what was the point of the match so far. The work


Reid did! Look at this. Get that back, he's right on the back fence.


Great pushing. However, the net result is break


point. They have won the game of patients.


I was just thinking, which one, because they started getting a bit


tentative. Houdet tried a big forehand and it


didn't come off. Quite a big game, this. Hewett and


Reid it need to take advantage of this point.


Well played. Saw off a break point. Won the game point.


We remain on serve. If you're just joining us, it's the men's


wheelchair doubles final at Wimbledon, we were interrupted by


rain for three hours. This is Gordon and Alfie's chance, I


think. They know that Peifer can be new -- he can be changeable and he


can make mistakes. Well, how significant might that be?


They've got the break of serve in this deciding set.


Their respective armies are in full cry. Maybe lots of people watching


this back home, maybe in their chairs, thinking, I quite fancy a


bit of wheelchair tennis, what do they do, where do they go, how easy


is it to take up the sport? Really easy, just go down your local tennis


Centre. There are hubs as well, you can get hold of the tennis


foundation, they've got a big website. There's lots of chairs in


centres and coaches. You can just get started. It's exciting, the


crowd! That's how I got started, I went down to my local tennis Centre


and said, I want to play tennis. There are so many more opportunities


now. You don't have to have one of these


nifty chairs, you can use -- leave your day chair at the side of the


court and these chairs are available for you, so if you fancy it, you


know what to do. That was in, surely? The one called


it. That's a very good challenge, is it? Its way in.


Going to have to do some training on that. The quality of the challenging


has fallen some distance short of the quality of the tennis. To be


fair, we don't have a Hawk-Eye in most of the other tournaments so


they're getting used to it. I think you're being very kind!


These are the moments for which Alfie Hewett has worked so hard, for


the sports psychologist to help him, to calm the nerves, he's been in big


situations like this before. French Open champion a month ago on the


close at Roland Garros, fully focused.


Quite a big period of the match, this. The middle of the third set. I


think Alfie and Gordon can get on top of the French pair, they have a


good chance. I almost said good serve.


Starting to wonder if we're going to do this again, if we're going to win


it together again. That was a big game. If you look at the French,


they fade in and out. The British duo can keep the pressure on.


Alfie wasn't taking any chances on his overheads this time.


Wow, that's what you can do playing tennis on wheels. Longest rally in


the match, 33 shots. Look at this daisy cutter. Skimming the top of


the net. The ball didn't come up off the grass, that's why he couldn't


really get under it. Full court play, full credit to them.


That's is strong mentally from Stephane Houdet as much as anything,


holding onto his service game. It's heating up a bit, isn't it? This is


where we are, out on Court number three, up the hill. On Court 17, for


the quarterfinals and the semifinals. They've moved to one of


the grand show courts near the millennium building. It holds a


couple of thousand. It was full first thing this morning before the


rain came and the finals began on number one and centre. Very healthy


population still, largely by folk who are not entirely neutral!


Mums and dads, aunties, uncles, brothers and sisters, and coaches.


They are all trying to stay calm from a British perspective for now


because Hewett and Reid have the break of serve. More people are


coming into the stadium to get a view of wheelchair tennis at its


best. Potentially two games away. It is a big game to hold for Reid.


You can see they are positive. Hewett is trying to upset the rhythm


by coming in and out. Gordon Reid lost the use of his legs


just before his 30th birthday. He had a disease that affects the


spinal-cord and he was paralysed for six months.


Once he regained some movement he began to play the sport initially


just to keep fit. Then they realised he was pretty good at it and now he


is winning Wimbledon titles. You can see the French heads going


down a little bit. It is not going their way. It is going the British


way. That is exceptional from Peifer.


Strong wrists. Oh, missed it. Confusion in the


French camp, that is why. They are nearly there.


Houdet and Peifer have worked so hard and played so well to make this


final a spectacle. I think we will see Hewett and Reid


pressing a bit more to elicit some mistakes from the French.


The French pair have been together now for over 100 matches, ten years.


They are not giving up yet. Not by a long chalk. Not when you have


someone of the ability of Stephane Houdet flying around the net. They


will push this pair to serve it out because they can put pressure on the


serve. They will need at least one more


game before we work out who the Wimbledon champions will be. Where


were you the most nervous, Peter, when you were winning your


Paralympic medals? Five of them and ten Grand Slam titles. When were you


most nervous? The first round, the semifinals. It is all or nothing


essentially. If you win, you are in the final. The reality comes in the


final. And then the very last game serving for the match. That is when


you have to focus so much. It becomes tunnel vision. You have to


exclude everything and pick the spot where you are going to serve.


Because you are choosing, you are deciding, where the ball is going


and in a way where it is coming back. You need to think of two


shots. They are being roared on by a big support. Alfie Hewett and Gordon


Reid have enjoyed calling themselves Wimbledon champions over the last


year. It is interesting how the nerves


fluctuate between each pair. Depending on what the score is, the


nerves build and then they deflate. It has been an advantage in this


final so far. Absolutely, sometimes it is good to be behind. Then the


pressure comes off. He will be looking for a big serve


because he has got nothing to lose now.


Communication. That is why you hit the ball down the middle. It is so


effective. Both of them were doing backhand. Normally you would say it


is the forehand. That is a ripper. That is what he


has got to do. He has got to take the ball by the horns and use his


chair and his body and go for it. Be aggressive and not passive.


Oh, dear. Stephane Houdet raised his game at the time he needed to. They


also went a bit passive. They did not go for the win. But that is


often what happens when you are serving for a match.


It will be a third set tie-break if it goes to 6-6.


The pressure is off Hewett and read now. It would be nice for them to


break back. Oh, he has missed it. Houdet has


missed his little drop volley. Oh, that is just brilliant from


Alfie Hewett who is firing again. That is what they want. That


forehand crosscourt. It flashed past the front of Houdet.


You could hear the crash and that was Houdet's chair coming down onto


the ground. Great chair control. Unlucky,


though. Wow. Isn't that the nerves of steel by the Frenchman? I suspect


I was not the only one who forgot to breathe during the rally. Still


another break point. It was long. I do not think these


challenges are going to improve percentage-wise. They cannot have


many challenges left. It's good, solid tennis. He thought


he was going to go for the usual forehand but he headed into the


trams. But play. I was just saying to myself, come on


Alfie Hewett, rip a backhand top-spin, and he did. He eyed it up


and he went, wash! In moments like that, he's been the best player on


the court. If it was a highlight reel, he would beat providing most


of the shots. The extra pace with Hewett again on


his forehand, made Houdet overcook it. Karen Ross on her feet. She's


been with Gordon Reid for a decade or so now. She was with Andy Murray


went he was growing up in Dunblane. She knows what this moment might


mean. Oh, he's got it! He has got it and


the family are little bit excited! Well, they've been here before.


Sure, it's brilliant. That's why we watch it, that's why we play, that's


why we love sport. They absolutely have loved being champions. A couple


of weeks ago, Gordon Reid added MBE to his name on the back of that


Paralympic medal, met the Queen in Edinburgh. Alfie Hewett has been


French Open champion. But this is where it started for them 12 months


ago on these courts, at this place, at Wimbledon. It's really defined


them as a partnership. Gordon Reid's girlfriend in the white dress


leading the applause. And again, one game. But we know how tough that can


be sometimes. This time, it will be on the serve of Gordon Reid.


That's a good omen, isn't it? And miscommunication by the French


again. And Hewett and we'd take the first point.


That's the pressure of the double faults, not surprising. So much at


stake. Calling yourself Wimbledon champion. Not going to have anything


in out left! -- any fingernails left!


The right shot for Gordon, hit it right at the wheels of Peifer and he


got a short ball and he could put that away really easily.


Two championship points. To defend the title.


Celebrations in the standard at a bit premature. It looked it but


Peifer was way too fast there and guided it between me two British


players. Still another match point. And a reminder that if this goes to


6-6, where it entering a tie-break, just like last year to decide who


the champions are. Two championship points have come


and gone. Now there's one more. People can barely watch in the


commentary box. Do a big serve, that's what I'd do!


Especially for that, go big. They're being careful, quite rightly.


Thing is, you can't pick it. It keeps swinging, the momentum keeps


changing. The pressure keeps changing on each player.


And we're into a tie-break. And hats off to Peifer and Houdet. Under


enormous pressure. Made sure that just like last year, this men's


doubles final will be decided in the most domestic of fashions. --


dramatic of fashions. The French are serving first as well which gives


them a slight advantage. The championship points came and went


for the British. Fabulous reach by Alfie Hewett


there. Maybe outfoxed Houdet. He does keep pulling out the big


forehand and backhand when they really, really need it. Could not


get much tighter! There is the first mini-break in


this tied deciding tie-break. That was wide of the centreline. I


don't think we've got one right, yet. And the trend continues.


Your heart goes out to Stephane Houdet. Not a great time to


challenge, tie-break, second serve, changes your with and your


smoothness. -- changes your rhythm. Just gone off the boil a little bit,


Gordon. CROWD: ??CAP NEXT come on, boys.


Their coach is off his feet. Karen Ross next door is offering support,


the crowd are offering support. They used as support me through my


trials and tribulations as well. A fantastic reach by Hewett. He has


been a little superstar over the last half an hour. He is the one


driving them forward now. They have had championship points


before. They have got four more of them.


Gordon and Alfie can afford to be positive. They can afford to take a


couple of risks. They have a couple of spare points. Be aggressive.


They have done it. They have done it again. Hewett and read. Alfie and


Gordon, Wimbledon champions again. Amazing. Amazing scenes.


How good was he? Gordon Reid, the Paralympic champion, the Paralympic


gold medallist, alongside the Paralympic silver medallist. They


have another 12 months of being able to call themselves Wimbledon


champions. How about that? Unbelievable, it is fantastic. As


Gordon was pointing to Alfie again, similar to their match last year.


When Alfie is hitting those backhand shots, it puts pressure on the


opponents. He lifted them up in that tie-break. Glorious. Let's not


forget the work that the coaches put in. The back room teams. I am not


entirely sure the official steward should be doing that. There you go,


any semblance of neutrality thrown out of the window. It has been that


kind of day. Brilliant, absolutely fantastic. I work for Stephane


Houdet as well, one of the great men of this sport. He has contributed to


wheelchair tennis for so long. He is a fabulous ambassador. This is an


exhibition of wheelchair tennis for everyone. We see it all the time and


we have been pushing the boundaries. These four players are marvellous.


The talent is incredible. The president of the French tennis


Federation is amongst those getting the autographs. Look at Alfie


Hewett's face. I think they knew how close they came. Who wants the


sweatband of a Wimbledon champion? I hope he gets those free. That is


where the sport has changed! You laid the foundations for this,


Peter. It is just brilliant. One of the wonderful things as well seeing


those kids get their autographs, we are of a generation were watching


somebody played tennis in a wheelchair was something new for us,


something we had to get used to, something we learned about. For this


next generation watching people playing tennis in wheelchairs is


commonplace, that is what happens. Absolutely and also the history of


disability and the changes in society for various things. This is


the norm. In my daily life I can do everything you can do, I can play


tennis in the same as everyone else, it is just that I am sitting down.


Ladies and gentlemen, the trophies will be presented on court to the


winners and the runners-up of the wheelchair doubles. Please welcome


to court David Rollinson, the member of the committee of the management


of the Championships and deputy president of the LTA.


Firstly, this year's runners up from France, Stephane Houdet and Nicolas


Peifer. And now the 2017 Wimbledon champions


from Great Britain, Gordon Reid and Alfie Hewett.


Let's grab a work with our champions. Alfie, how good is it to


come here and defend your title? It is absolutely amazing and to do it


in such a close battle as well against the French. They fought for


every single point even when they were 5-3 down. They made a great


match of it. Congratulations to them. It was a terrific match in


terms of quality and as Alfie said, Gordon, the fight from Stephan and


Nicholas, they saved four match point in the end and they put you


under pressure. They do not like doing it the easy way that is for


sure. I would like to thank them for the way the match was played, in the


best spirit possible. And look at this crowd, listen to it. You guys


are amazing. I have been playing wheelchair tennis for 12 years and


never once did I think we would fill a stadium out in Wimbledon like


this, especially as the women's singles final was happening on


Centre Court. I hope you enjoyed the match and thank you for the support.


I do not think there will be a single person here who did not enjoy


it and who was not applauding every shot of the near three hours of


action, spread over a longer than that because of the rain delays. How


tough was it in the closing stages of the third set knowing you were


that close to retaining the title to go through and do it? When you have


four match point and they saved them all and you have to go into a


tie-break it is quite tiring and you have to restart and go again. We did


a good job of going out there and having no regrets and just going for


it and playing instinctively and that is what we did in the end. It


is one of the best tie-breaks we played. You have got a whole section


of family, friends, supporters, coaches. What would you like to say


to them? They have been there for us ever since the start of our


journeys, especially my guys back over there. And the coaches over


there and everyone else is spread out around the court, it is great to


experience this with them and celebrate with them. There will be


some watching, like little Cameron who is ten years old, who wants to


follow in your footsteps. What do you hope next for wheelchair tennis?


What do you hope that this and having it on Court the can now


propel you to do? That is what it is all about. And last year the sport


has grown massively, especially in this country. The more opportunity


we have on this stage to showcase the sport, the more chance we can


inspire young people to pick it up and it can have an impact on their


lives as well. Hopefully we can peep people in the sport and keep going


on the Centre Court may be in a couple of years. Well fed and well


played. To our champions once again, Gordon Reid and Alfie Hewett.


They speak so well and they played so well as well. It was immensely


exciting. I mentioned little Cameron who is sitting there behind, because


he wants to be the next Alfie Hewett. What an inspiration those


guys are. The thing about disability sport, this is about professional


people playing the best sport they possibly can and it shows what they


can do. They have now grabbed the union flag and Gordon and Alfie are


celebrating with their trophy. They have come through 6-7, 7-5, 7-6. The


French pair saved four match point. It was a thrilling match and they


thoroughly deserved their victory. I cannot tell you what a joy it is to


be here in front of such a large crowd applauding high-quality


tennis. Well done to them. Coverage continues on BBC One of the mixed


doubles final. Goodbye.


Clare Balding introduces continued coverage of the final of the men's wheelchair doubles. The French pairing of Stephane Houdet and Nicolas Peifer take on British pair Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid.

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