We are super proud that SotoTennis Academy professional player Evan Hoyt made it to the quarter finals of the mixed doubles event at Wimbledon with partner Eden Silva. Evan was ranked 333rd in doubles and was the first welsh person to reach the quarters since Gerald Battrick in the men’s doubles in 1975.
Evan has been part of the Academy for two years, he has grown into a cultural leader, from the way he lives the Academy’s values and behaviours to his openness and readiness to support his ‘team mates’ at the Academy. Evan often joins in with mini tennis sessions, inspiring young tennis players at the Academy. There is always such a buzz on court when one of your tennis hero’s is supporting your session.
Evan has really bought into and drives forward the philosophy of “getting better every day” whether at base or on the road where he spends a significant amount of time. This way of leading is inspirational to all of us involved at the Academy and are excited for what the future holds for him!’
“I am fit and healthy at the moment and have been for almost two years and know I am heading in the right direction, and I have a great team of people around me and a great family that have supported me through those tough times. I have always dreamt of playing Wimbledon” Evan Hoyt
The British pair gained their first senior Wimbledon win by beating Leander Paes and Sam Stosur 6-4 2-6 6-4 in the first round. Veteran Paes is a four-time Wimbledon mixed doubles champion, while Stosur has won two titles in the event. Evan became the first Welsh player to win a senior match at Wimbledon since Sarah Loosemore in 1990.
“It was the first point of the match where the crowd went wild and it was a Goosebumps moment. You learn things about yourself in a first set like that. I’m really proud of the way we came back, especially the way Eden played.” Evan Hoyt
In the 2nd round match Evan and Eden beat 16th-seeds Divij Sharan and Yingying Duan in straight sets 6-3 6-4.
Evan Hoyt and Eden Silva came from behind to win their 3rd round match, beating Belgian Joran Vliegen and China’s Saisai Zheng. They recovered from going a set and a break down to clinch the win.
The British pair lost their 4-1 lead and the first set, after the Belgian-Chinese pair staged a comeback. In the second, Evan and Eden were also behind, but managed to force a tie-break after recovering from being broken, and edged it 7-5.
Evan, said that dramatic first-set point gave him “Goosebumps”. “It was a bit of a scrappy point, we were both running around the court switching sides, and when that dropped in to go 4-1 up in the first it was an unbelievable feeling.”
The final set was tightly fought but their single break proved the difference as they won in just over two hours, 5-7, 7-5, 6-4.
#TeamSoto was watching and supporting from round the world!
“We have tried in each match to have fun out there and I have reminded Eden every match to just enjoy it and not have any expectations because it is our first Wimbledon here. At times if you do get too serious you lose that energy and buzz and the bond you have out on the court. So we have tried to have that bit of fun.” Evan Hoyt
Evan and Eden played against eighth seeds Ivan Dodig of Croatia and Chinese Taipei’s Latisha Chan in their quarter final match. They had a flying start opening up a 4-1 lead by breaking Chan’s serve, but Silva was broken twice as Dodig and Chan fought back to win the opening set.
In the second set Evan served at 5-3, but unfortunately the pair could not force a set point and four games in a row left Chan serving for victory.
A great returning game from the British pair gave them another life as they forced a tie-break and they looked to be taking it to a decider as they led 4-1 and 5-3.
But Dodig and Chan rallied and saw it out in straight sets winning four successive points. Final score 7-5 7-6.
“It’s amazing, it is still sinking in, I have thoroughly enjoyed an amazing first experience of senior Wimbledon. If somebody had told me it would be in the quarter-finals of the mixed doubles I would have jumped at the opportunity” Evan Hoyt
What a couple of weeks Evan and Eden had at Wimbledon their positive, fun, energetic and passionate attitudes are exemplary. We couldn’t be prouder of Evan and all he represents for the Academy.
Evan is still training hard with SotoTennis Academy here are some of his achievements since Wimbledon:
- Semi finalist in doubles at the Gatineau Challenger 80 (Canada),
- Semi finalist in doubles at the Aptos Challenger 90 (USA),
- Finalist at the M25 Bagneres-De-Bigorre (France), and
- Semi finalist at the M25 Tavira (Portugal).