UA grad leads USTA quad team to World Team title - Tucson News Now

UA grad leads USTA quad team to World Team title

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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – The U.S. quad team of Nick Taylor, 33, of Wichita, Kan., David Wagner, 39, of Chula Vista, Calif., Bryan Barten, 39, of Tucson, Ariz., and Greg Hasterok, 36, of San Diego led the U.S. to the 2013 BNP Paribas World Team Cup title, defeating Israel, 2-0, in the final.

The event was held last month on the clay courts of Club Ali Bey Manavgat on the Turkish Riviera, in Antalya, Turkey.  The victory re-established the U.S. as the top team in the world after it won bronze at last year's event.  It was the third victory over Israel in the last four years for the American team, and the U.S. team's eighth overall World Team Cup wheelchair tennis crown.

In the opening rubber American Nick Taylor defeated Israel's Shraga Weinberg, 6-3, 6-2.

"This is the biggest event of the year for me personally and being part of the winning team is a real honor," said Taylor.  "The last time I played Weinberg was for the bronze in London (at the Paralympics) and that was a very tough three-set match, but the conditions were very different.  I'm definitely a happier person on the clay than I am on the type of courts that we had in London."

The second singles rubber pitted former world No.1 Noam Gershony against current world No.1 David Wagner.  Wagner dominated from the start and won 6-2, 6-2. 

"We stuck to our game plan and really supported each other.  We were the best team out there," said Wagner. "It is always good to get out and battle the best. This is my sixth World Team Cup title and I'd like to dedicate it to my mom Cathy Carson and my grandma Dorothy Carson."

With the U.S. team boasting four players in the world's top 11 in the quad singles rankings, world No. 10 Greg Hasterok also noted the unity among the quartet. "It is an amazing feeling, being a group and being united," said Hasterok, for whom this was his first World Team Cup title.

Meanwhile, Bryan Barten (UA '99) added to his tally of titles at the ITF's flagship wheelchair tennis team event, having previously joined Taylor and Wagner on the squad that beat Israel in the final on the same court in Antalya in 2010.

"That was one of my favorite ones (World Team Cup titles)," said Barten. "We've all grown up together in this sport and the camaraderie this week has been amazing. We had four players this time and the dynamic has been excellent."

Often referred to as the wheelchair tennis equivalent of pro tennis' Davis Cup and Fed Cup competitions, the World Team Cup tournament brings the world's best wheelchair tennis players together to compete in one of the world's premier tennis team events. More than 200 players from more than 50 nations participated in the 2013 event.

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