Alfie stars in Italian job

Alfie Hewett in action.

Alfie Hewett in action. - Credit: Chris Vaughan/Tennis FOundation

Alfie Hewett claimed his first singles title of 2015 on Sunday when Cantley’s young wheelchair tennis star completed a brace of victories at the ITF 3 Series Alpi del Mare tournament in Cuneo, Italy.

After his first visit to Australia in January and tournaments in the Netherlands and Britain, 17-year-old Hewett’s return to Europe saw the second seed start his singles campaign by defeating Germany’s Guido Nespethal before earning a 6-1,7-5 win over Thomas Vinatier of France.

He went on to beat Austria’s fourth seed Martin Legner 6-4, 6-2 in the semi-finals before Sunday’s 6-3, 6-4 win over French top seed Frederic Cattaneo in the final.

“I’ve been working hard to get fitter and stronger,” said Hewett, the only British player on the Tennis Foundation’s Wheelchair Tennis Programme playing in the tournament.

“I thought I dominated all the matches I played.

“I was feeling really confident going into the final, but nervous as I had never beaten Cattaneo before.

“I really did perform so I’m very pleased.”

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A hectic second day of action saw Hewett play one singles and two doubles matches in one day.

But despite his busy schedule his second senior doubles event partnering Dutchman Carlos Anker ended with a first title triumph together.

Unseeded Hewett and Anker beat Nespethal and Coronado 6-2, 7-5 in the last eight before edging out French pair Cattaneo and Laurent Giammartini 6-1, 1-6, (10-7) after a tie-break in the semi-finals. They battled through another match tie-break in Saturday’s doubles final, eventually beating Rody de Bie of the Netherlands and Sebastien Husser of France 6-1, 4-6, (13-11).