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Murray's march lifts Hutchins in cancer battle

Andy Murray's march to the Australian Open final has lifted the spirits of long-time friend and Davis Cup team-mate Ross Hutchins, who is suffering from Hodgkin's Lymphoma, a form of cancer.

Hutchins announced the news earlier this month on his official Twitter account, with Murray dedicating his win in the Brisbane International to the 27-year-old.

Murray has gone on to reach the showpiece event in the first grand slam of the year - seeing off Roger Federer in five sets in the semi-final yesterday - and Hutchins believes the Scot has proved his credentials in the last six months ahead of his Melbourne showdown with Novak Djokovic tomorrow.

"Andy and I have been in touch more or less every day since I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma," Hutchins said.

"Seeing him get to the final does help me. Watching such a close friend doing well makes me happy. It puts a big smile on my face and lifts my spirits.

"Andy's proving how good he is in adversity. In the Olympic final, everyone thought Federer would win because he was so desperate to get gold at last. And at the US Open not many people expected Andy to come back from losing the third and fourth sets.

"It felt like that again going into the fifth yesterday but he's once again proved his opponent wrong. He's showing people what he's all about."

Wimbledon-born Hutchins specialises in doubles competition, where he has won five titles during his career, including two in 2012 at Eastbourne and Delray Beach alongside Scot Colin Fleming.

Of his condition, he added: "My treatment is going okay. I feel good. I had my second session of chemo on Thursday and that leaves you with a few headaches and chest pains. But it's nothing too drastic. I'm doing all I can to eliminate side-effects so that the drugs can work inside me.

"That means healthy eating, sleeping properly and exercise."

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