Wimbledon 2011: GB wheelchair duo lose in doubles semis

By Elizabeth HudsonBBC Sport at Wimbledon
Britain's Lucy Shuker (left) and Jordanne Whiley
Shuker (left) and Whiley hope to compete in next year's Paralympics

Britain's hopes of success in the Wimbledon wheelchair doubles event vanished when Lucy Shuker and Jordanne Whiley were beaten in the semi-finals.

The pair lost 6-1 6-2 to Dutch pair Jiske Griffioen and Aniek van Koot.

It sets up an all-Dutch decider after defending champions Esther Vergeer and Sharon Walraven won the opening semi-final of the competition.

They defeated their compatriot Marjolein Buis and her Belgian partner Annick Sevenans 6-1 6-7 (5-7) 6-2.

Shuker, who had been out of action until recently with an elbow injury, had reached the final for the past two years with Australia's Daniela di Toro but she and teenager Whiley found the going tough this time.

Griffioen and van Koot used their experience to great effect and Shuker and Whiley were given few chances.

"It was a great experience to play here but I think I crumbled a bit under the pressure," Whiley admitted afterwards.

"We're going to work on that and take the positives from this game and go out again on Sunday.

"We've got another great chance in the play-off for third and fourth but it's all good experience ahead of 2012."

Shuker added: "The Dutch girls played well and had very good tactics against us but because of my disability it's always going to be tougher for me to move on grass compared to other surfaces.

"It's disappointing but at least we have another match to play."

The British pair hope to compete in next year's Paralympics in London.

Vergeer and Walraven, who are unbeaten in Grand Slams since last year's French Open, looked to be on course for a comfortable victory when they swept through the opening set.

But Buis and Sevenans came more into the match in the second set and broke the Vergeer serve en route to a 4-1 lead.

The all-Dutch pair rallied to win the next four consecutive games and go 5-4 ahead but both Walraven and Vergeer lost their serve when serving for the match and Buis and Sevenans took advantage to level the match via the tie-break.

Vergeer and Walraven looked more comfortable in the decider, quickly taking a 5-1 lead and they soon wrapped up victory.

The men's semi-finals take place on Saturday with last year's winners Robin Ammerlaan of the Netherlands and Stefan Olsson of Sweden up against reigning US Open and Wheelchair Doubles Masters champions Maikel Scheffers and Ronald Vink.

Scheffers and Vink will be bidding for their first Wimbledon title as a pairing, although Vinkwon the event in 2007 and 2008, partnering Ammerlaan on both occasions.

In the other semi-final, Beijing doubles champions Stephane Houdet and Michael Jeremiasz of France will play together at Wimbledon for the first time since winning the title in 2009.

The French pair will face Dutchman Tom Egberink, who is making his Wimbledon debut, and world number one singles player Shingo Kunieda of Japan, who partnered compatriot Satoshi Saida to victory at SW19 in 2006.