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Rik’s Olympic dream

By Mark Etheridge

Fresh from Davis Cup victory over the Netherlands in Potchefstroom, our Rik de Voest now has an Olympic sized dream.

De Voest teamed up with our top-ranked singles player Kevin Anderson to win a vital doubles clash against the Dutch duo of Robin Haase and Jesse Huta Galung before Anderson sealed the tie for South Africa by beating Haase on Sunday.

Before the Davis Cup tie, De Voest played Wimbledon where he won his first round match and then jetted back to the US to fit in a Challenger event in Chicago before pitching in Potchefstroom.

Talking about his London ambitions next year De Voest said: “The final major goal of my career is to go to the Olympics in London. Having played doubles with Kevin over the weekend, I hope that we can play more often with the potential to qualify for the Olympics together. I am also playing well in singles, so will give it my best shot in singles too, especially as Olympics is on grass, where I play well.

“The doubles was really important and Kevin and I combined well. His big game, and my control with net play and returns made for a good combination. It was a great feeling to win that doubles match and then have Kevin seal the victory with his win on Sunday.

“Davis Cup was great and awesome to have Kevin back in the team, he is playing great tennis and adds such strength to our team. My singles match was tough, as Haase is a good player ranked in the 50’s. I started well winning the first set, then did not serve well and the rest of game game struggled, before finding my range again in the fourth to play some good tennis again.”

On his build-up to the Davis Cup clash, De Voest also spoke of his satisfaction at his Wimbledon and Chicago form. Currently ranked 131st on the ATP rankings and 137th in the doubles, De Voest said: “Wimbledon was great, I love playing on the grass and find my game and movement are well suited to the surface. It was great to win a main draw singles match for the first time, and at the age of 31, even more satisfying.

“I then flew to Chicago for a Challenger event, as I felt I was playing well and wanted to maximize my points opportunity. I made the semi-finals there losing to James Blake {in three sets}, after serving for the match, so that was disappointing, but a good result.”


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