Joachim Gérard triumphs at Wimbledon
By winning the men's singles final of the Wimbledon wheelchair event, the Belgian earned a second Grand Slam title following his victory at the Australian Open earlier this year.
Joachim Gérard is having a particularly good year, and is ranked 4th in the world in his discipline. He had only twice reached a Grand Slam final but never won one (Australian Open in 2016 and Roland-Garros in 2020), but he earned the accolade in 2021 by winning two supreme titles.
On the London grass court, the 32-year-old Belgian had a two-set battle (6-2, 7-6) against British player Gordon Reid, ranked sixth in the world, in an exciting final watched by an enthusiastic crowd. Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, was also present at the All England Club to encourage the two tennis players in this increasingly popular sport. As Joachim Gérard, who was very emotional after his victory, pointed out to the London audience, "A few years ago, nobody came to see us. More and more people now come to watch. It's normal for you to support the British player, but you're never against his opponent and that's a very nice aspect."
Although the result was played out in a very tight tie-break, the Belgian deserved to win because he played a more consistent and offensive game than his opponent. The latter was very fair and said, "Jo played fantastic tennis and was very impressive in the important points."
The three-time Belgian Paralympic athlete of the year (2013, 2019, 2020) is hoping to achieve even more in the rest of his career.