Sithole plans to go where no one else has gone

CityPress - - Sport - RE­ABETSWE MASHIGO re­abetswe.mashigo@city­press.co.za

Wheel­chair ten­nis star Lu­cas Sithole has been in bril­liant form re­cently – win­ning more than four ti­tles to make up for a lack­lus­tre 2014.

The year has been filled with good for­tune for Sithole. He re­claimed the Bri­tish Open ti­tle, which he first won in 2013, and the SA Open against world num­ber one, Amer­i­can David Wag­ner.

Although Sithole won the SA Open at the El­lis Park ten­nis court in April, he is adamant that he does not want to re­live the match.

“That day was cold and I only had an energy drink for break­fast. I wasn’t ner­vous, but I was cer­tainly not con­fi­dent.

“I lost the first set 3-6 but came back to win the last two sets 6-3, 6-3,” he said.

Sithole has dropped from sec­ond to fourth place in the quads men’s sin­gles’ rank­ings.

He told City Press this was the year for him to re­gain lost ground.

“Last year, my coach and I didn’t have a good plan and we took it easy be­cause I was very tired. I’m hop­ing I will come back on top this year be­cause I’m feel­ing very con­fi­dent,” he said.

Sithole beat Wag­ner in straight sets of 7-5, 6-2 to win the Ja­pan Open dou­bles ti­tle last year.

He has a diploma in sports man­age­ment, which he ob­tained in the same month that he won his first US Open quad ti­tle – his maiden grand slam in 2013.

Sithole plans to reach new heights in his ca­reer and be­lieves his hard work will even­tu­ally pay off.

“I want to go very far where no one has been able to in my sport. The sky is the limit,” he said.

The mul­ti­tal­ented fa­ther of three is also a mu­si­cian. He pro­duced a maskandi al­bum last year as a trib­ute to his late fa­ther and is hop­ing to pro­duce another one later this year.

Sithole will be shift­ing fo­cus af­ter the Par­a­lympics next year and plans to ven­ture into the de­vel­op­men­tal side of sport.

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