Sithole & Montjane Seeded For SA Open

South African Wheelchair tennis aces Lucas Sithole and Kgothatso (KG) Montjane have both been seeded in their respective divisions for this week’s Airports Company South Africa SA Open to be played at Ellis Park, Johannesburg from the 14 to 18 April.  Sithole has been seeded third in the quads division behind top seeded world number one David Wagner of the USA and second seed Andy Lapthorne of Great Britain.  Sithole should meet Lapthorne in Friday’s semi-final if all goes according to plan.

Montjane has been seeded five in the women’s singles.  Jiske Griffioen of Netherlands, the world number three is the women’s singles top seed followed by Sabine Ellerbrock of German with the winner of last week’s Airports Company South Africa Gauteng Open, Marjolein Buis also of Netherlands seeded three.  Katherine Kruger of Germany is the fourth seed.

Montjane is seeded to meet Buis in this week’s quarterfinals, a repeat of Sunday’s Gauteng Open final which Buis won 6-4 6-1.  The only other South African seeded in the tournament is Bongani Dlamini of KwaZulu-Natal who has been seeded eighth in the quads division.  Dlamini is seeded to meet compatriot Sithole in the last eight.

World number two Stephane Houdet of France has been named the top seed in the men’s singles with Gustavo Fernandez of Argentina seeded to meet Houdet in the final.  Last week’s Gauteng Open winner Joachim Gerard Belgium is the third men’s seed with Michael Nicolas Peifer of France seeded four.  The draw for the tournament was conducted on Monday afternoon by tournament referee Mxolisi Matyolo with Australian men’s singles player Ben Weeks and Russian women’s singles star, Lludmila Bubnova in attendance.

Being seeded, Sithole and Montjane have first round byes and will not play on the opening day tomorrow (Tuesday) and will get their campaign underway on Wednesday.  However South Africa’s top ranked men’s singles player Evans Maripa will be in action on Tuesday.  In a tough opening round, Maripa faces in form Nicolas Peifer who was runner up on Sunday to Joachim Gerard in the Gauteng Open final.

Play starts at 09:00 tomorrow (Tuesday) at the Ellis Park Tennis Stadium in Johannesburg.  The seeds announced are as follows:


1-Stephane Houdet (Fra)
2-Gustavo Fernandez (Arg)
3-Joachim Gerard (Bel)
4-Nicolas Peifer (Fra)
5-Maikel Scheffers (Ned)
6-Takashi Sanada (Jpn)
7-Tom Egberink (Ned)
8-Stefan Olsson (Swe)


1-Jiske Griffioen (Ned)
2-Sabine Ellerbrock (Ger)
3-Marjolein Buis (Ned)
4-Katharina Kruger (Ger)
5-Kgothatso Montjane (RSA)
6-Francisca Mardones (Chi)
7-Charlotte Famin (Fra)
8-Kaitlyn Verfuerth (USA)


1-David Wagner (USA)
2-Andy Lapthorne (GBR)
3-Lucas Sithole (RSA)
4-Jamie Burdekin (GBR)
5-Greg Hasterok (USA)
6-Antony Cotterill (GBR)
7-Anders Hard (Swe)
8-Bongani Dlamini (RSA)

Photo: Top seed David Wagner
Photo credit: Reg Caldecott/Gallo Images