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Sport: Alcott's classy gesture after astonishing feat

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Dylan Alcott has paid an emotional tribute to long-time rival Andy Lapthorne, with the pair embracing following their Australian Open quad wheelchair singles semifinal at Melbourne Park.

Alcott will play in an astonishing eighth consecutive Australian Open final, after he beat Lapthorne 6-3 6-0 today.

Following the straight sets victory, the wheelchair tennis great said he and Lapthorne have gone through the journey together.

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Dylan Alcott of Australia and Andy Lapthorne of Great Britain embrace after Dylan Alcott won the Men's Quad Wheelchair Singles Semifinals. © Getty Dylan Alcott of Australia and Andy Lapthorne of Great Britain embrace after Dylan Alcott won the Men's Quad Wheelchair Singles Semifinals.

"I want to give a big shout out to Andy. We just had a big embrace at the net. I got a bit emotional," Alcott said.

"He is a beautiful man. He said thanks for everything. Thanks for making his dreams come true.

"We did this together. Andy started before I did. We are the same age. First Grand Slam on a centre court was with this man, Andy Lapthorne."

Thursday will be Alcott's last professional tennis match, having announced his retirement from the tour.

But before then, he will be flying from Melbourne to Canberra today take part in the tomorrow's Australia Day proceedings.

Alcott is nominated for the Australian of the Year gong.

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"I think I'm no chance, first and foremost. I think Patty Mills is going to win," he said.

"To be nominated and for a person of disability to win that award would be massive. And I can't be sitting in my bedroom on Zoom with bad internet if I did win. So, I'm going to go up.

"I don't think I'm any chance."

Whether he wins the award or not, Alcott will need to put Australia Day behind him quickly and refocus on Melbourne Park.

On Thursday he takes on Sam Schroder from the Netherlands, the Aussie vying to win one more title on home soil before hanging up his racquet.

"It would be unbelievable, but it wouldn't be everything, right? I will live if I don't win on Thursday," he said.

"I've got the best life in the world, regardless of whether I win on Thursday. I'm the luckiest guy in the world, regardless of whether I win on Thursday."

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Your quick wrap-up of the news you need to know about.It's Thursday, January 27, and you're reading The Loop, a quick wrap-up of today's news.

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