(BEIJING, September 14) -- The second Quad Doubles Gold medal in Paralympic history was awarded to the United States team at the Olympic Green Tennis Center on Saturday, September 13.
The Quad division was only introduced to the Wheelchair Tennis event at the Athens Games in 2004. Players in this division have a disability in three or more limbs.
Top seeds, Nick Taylor and David Wagner reclaimed the gold medal that they won in Athens in the Beijing final on Saturday, beating the unseeded Israeli team, Boaz Kramer and Shraga Weinberg, in a respectable match, 6-0, 4-6, 6-2.
Taylor's remarkable playing style has been a highlight of the Beijing Games. To serve, he throws the ball in the air with his feet, hitting it with a racquet held in his left hand, delivering sensational serves deep into the service box. As his right hand has less mobility, he uses a motorized wheelchair to move around the court. He serves underhand because he has no biceps and cannot lift the racquet above his head. Taylor says he learnt by practicing up against his grandmother's garage door.
Israel's silver is the first medal Kramer and Weinberg, who also beat second seeds, Jamie Burdekin and Peter Norfolk of Great Britain 6-4, 6-4 to make it into the final. The disappointed Brits were forced to battle it out for the bronze medal with the Dutch team, Dorrie Timmermans-van Hall and Bas Van Erp on Saturday, which they won 6-7 (4), 7-5, 6-1, after a match lasting nearly three hours. Norfolk had won a silver in Athens with a different partner. His new partner, Burdekin, was pleased to have won a medal at his first Paralympics.
The first day of the Quad Doubles event was also its quarterfinal, with the Dutch duo easily beating Italians Giuseppe Polidori and Antonio Raffaele 6-0, 6-2. Van Erp had won the bronze in Athens but did not make it past the quarterfinals this time. The Israelis, Kramer and Weinberg beat fellow unseeded players, Johan Andersson and Christer Jansson from Sweden 6-2, 6-4 in the quarterfinals.
All match results can be found here.