By Oli Dickson Jefford at Wimbledon
Andy Lapthorne felt he was always in control of his quad wheelchair men’s doubles semi-final which ended in unfortunate circumstances on Friday afternoon.
Feltham’s Lapthorne, who is supported by the LTA’s Wheelchair Tennis Performance Pathway, and American partner David Wagner are two-time defending champions in the quad wheelchair doubles and were up against Donald Ramphadi and Koji Sugeno in their semi-final.
And after taking the first set, the Brit and Wagner reached the final after Ramphadi was forced to retire trailing 6-3 3-4 due to a mechanical issue with his wheelchair.
The 31-year-old conceded that it was not the way that he wanted to reach a third straight final at his home Grand Slam, but believed he and his partner would have gone on to win the match outright.
He said: “It was close in the second set but it felt like we were still in control and where we needed to be.
“A couple of points here and there and we gave them a couple of games, but we always felt in control and I like to think we would have won anyway.
“Obviously it’s not a nice way to get through but we’ll take it. It’s unfortunate for them but very fortunate for us. I’m happy to be back playing another final.”
Lapthorne and Wagner will now face Dutch duo Niels Vink and Sam Schröder in this weekend’s final.
The duo beat Vink and Schröder in the Australian Open final earlier this year but the Dutchmen won the Roland Garros title just a few weeks ago.
And in what is set to be a tough final, Lapthorne hopes the surface and support from friends, family and fellow Brits will help.
Lapthorne added: “It’s always good. I’m a local boy so lots of people want to come and watch.
“I’m trying to get as many tickets as possible as a lot of people come and watch, and I’m sure Sunday’s going to be even worse as it’s a weekend - I’m sure there’s going to be lots of people that want to come and watch!
“It’s always fun to play here and great to have so much support. It really helps.”