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Del Potro: ‘The Chance To Play Well Is Very Big’

The switch from clay to grass can provide players with a difficult challenge in a crucial part of the ATP Tour season, but Juan Martin del Potro is relishing the opportunity to adapt his game and achieve success ahead of the Fever-Tree Championships.

“I like the surface because my game can adapt really well,” said Del Potro. “I love the faster points, the aggressive game and I like to move on grass as well. The chance to play well is very big.”

Del Potro will need to find his feet on grass quickly if he is to advance beyond the first round at the ATP 500 event. The third seed will meet #NextGenATP Canadian Denis Shapovalov for the third time in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series (1-1) in his opening match.

The 6’6″ right-hander is making his first appearance at the grass-court tournament since 2016, following his fourth-round exit against Karen Khachanov at Roland Garros. Del Potro owns a 5-4 record at The Queen’s Club, highlighted by his run to the quarter-finals in 2013 (l. to Hewitt).

“I love this tournament,” said Del Potro. “Unfortunately, I couldn’t play these past few years but this time is a different moment for me. I want to be ready for Wimbledon and this tournament is a special one, so I am very excited to be here.”

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Del Potro also shared a positive update on his recovery from the right knee injury which forced him to make only one appearance on the ATP Tour between the Rolex Shanghai Masters in October 2018 and the Mutua Madrid Open last month.

“I think I am getting better after my knee injury,” said Del Potro. “I played well in Paris and now we move to a different surface, which I like. This tournament is also a good preparation to see how my body is, and my tennis level, also, and I think I will be fine.”

Del Potro: ‘The Chance To Play Well Is Very Big’

The switch from clay to grass can provide players with a difficult challenge in a crucial part of the ATP Tour season, but Juan Martin del Potro is relishing the opportunity to adapt his game and achieve success ahead of the Fever-Tree Championships.

“I like the surface because my game can adapt really well,” said Del Potro. “I love the faster points, the aggressive game and I like to move on grass as well. The chance to play well is very big.”

Del Potro will need to find his feet on grass quickly if he is to advance beyond the first round at the ATP 500 event. The third seed will meet #NextGenATP Canadian Denis Shapovalov for the third time in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series (1-1) in his opening match.

The 6’6″ right-hander is making his first appearance at the grass-court tournament since 2016, following his fourth-round exit against Karen Khachanov at Roland Garros. Del Potro owns a 5-4 record at The Queen’s Club, highlighted by his run to the quarter-finals in 2013 (l. to Hewitt).

“I love this tournament,” said Del Potro. “Unfortunately, I couldn’t play these past few years but this time is a different moment for me. I want to be ready for Wimbledon and this tournament is a special one, so I am very excited to be here.”

Watch Live

Del Potro also shared a positive update on his recovery from the right knee injury which forced him to make only one appearance on the ATP Tour between the Rolex Shanghai Masters in October 2018 and the Mutua Madrid Open last month.

“I think I am getting better after my knee injury,” said Del Potro. “I played well in Paris and now we move to a different surface, which I like. This tournament is also a good preparation to see how my body is, and my tennis level, also, and I think I will be fine.”

GUARDIAN TENNIS: Andy Murray has the talent to make comeback, says Juan Martín del Potro

GUARDIAN TENNIS: Andy Murray has the talent to make comeback, says Juan Martín del Potro

• Argentinian has fought back from several injuries
• ‘I was close to quitting right before the Olympics three years ago’

Few people have a better insight into Andy Murray’s torment than Juan Martín del Potro. For Murray’s right hip, read Del Potro’s troublesome knees. Or his unreliable wrists. The Argentinian was close to retiring from tennis three years ago but he summoned the will to return to the top level and believes his old friend and rival is capable of pulling off a similar comeback.

Del Potro will see Murray at Queen’s Club this coming week and he says they will talk about tennis, injuries and football. Yet there is no chance they will have one of their epic bouts. Murray, who had hip surgery earlier this year, is set to play doubles with Feliciano López during the Fever-Tree Championships and at Wimbledon next month, and there is no date set for his return to singles competition.

Related: Andy Murray cautiously hopeful gamble on hip surgery may extend tennis career

Related: Andy Murray beats Juan Martín del Potro to win second Olympic gold

Related: Andy Murray to make Queen’s doubles comeback against world’s best

Continue reading…

Sat, 15 Jun 2019 21:30:32 GMT

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Del Potro Stays Alive After Five

The sight had to make all tennis fans, and especially those of Juan Martin del Potro, cringe: the trainer trotting out to visit the Argentine.

Del Potro had his right knee heavily taped after dropping the opener of his second-round match against Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka on Thursday at Roland Garros. But the two-time semi-finalist played with the pain and managed to make his way into the third round for the sixth time in Paris 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-2.

Del Potro found his way in the second and third sets, crushing forehand winners and mixing in drop shots as Nishioka sagged behind the baseline.

In the fourth, however, Nishioka broke and led 3-1 before evening the match when Del Potro missed a second-serve return forehand wide. The 2009 and 2018 semi-finalist pounced early in the fifth, though, breaking for 3-1 and again to clinch the three-hour, 46-minute affair.

Read & Watch: Del Potro Gets Personal In ‘The Road To London’

The 6’6” right-hander is playing in only his fourth tournament of the season after breaking his right kneecap last October at the Rolex Shanghai Masters. He tested the injury in February in Delray Beach, only to realise he needed more time for rehab.

Watch: Up Close & Personal With Del Potro In His ‘Road To London’

During the European clay-court swing, Del Potro has made his comeback and shown that he’s truly ready. The 30-year-old reached the quarter-finals of the ATP Masters 1000 event in Rome, holding two match points against World No. 1 Novak Djokovic.

Thursday’s match, at times, matched its environment – the new Court Simonne-Mathieu, named after the 1938 and 1939 Roland Garros women’s champion who, during World War II, signed up as a volunteer for the French Army.

The court is nestled below four greenhouses, each with plants from a different continent – Australia, Africa, South America, Asia – and watching a match there can feel as relaxing as a stroll through exotic gardens.

Infosys powers real-time insights for every point

Del Potro will hope for a more relaxing scoreline when he next faces Aussie Jordan Thompson. Thompson made his first Round of 32 at a Grand Slam by beating Croatian Ivo Karlovic 6-3, 6-4, 6-7(2), 6-3. On Tuesday, the 40-year-old Karlovic became the oldest man to win at Roland Garros since 1973. Thompson went 1-11 at tour-level last year but already is 15-10 this season.

Did You Know?
This is the fifth straight year the top eight seeds have reached the third round in Roland Garros. The top 8 seeds have not reached the third round at any of the other 12 Grand Slam events during that time (2015-18 Wimbledon, 2015-18 US Open, 2016-19 Australian Open).

Del Potro Stays Alive After Five

The sight had to make all tennis fans, and especially those of Juan Martin del Potro, cringe: the trainer trotting out to visit the Argentine.

Del Potro had his right knee heavily taped after dropping the opener of his second-round match against Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka on Thursday at Roland Garros. But the two-time semi-finalist played with the pain and managed to make his way into the third round for the sixth time in Paris 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-2.

Del Potro found his way in the second and third sets, crushing forehand winners and mixing in drop shots as Nishioka sagged behind the baseline.

In the fourth, however, Nishioka broke and led 3-1 before evening the match when Del Potro missed a second-serve return forehand wide. The 2009 and 2018 semi-finalist pounced early in the fifth, though, breaking for 3-1 and again to clinch the three-hour, 46-minute affair.

Read & Watch: Del Potro Gets Personal In ‘The Road To London’

The 6’6” right-hander is playing in only his fourth tournament of the season after breaking his right kneecap last October at the Rolex Shanghai Masters. He tested the injury in February in Delray Beach, only to realise he needed more time for rehab.

Watch: Up Close & Personal With Del Potro In His ‘Road To London’

During the European clay-court swing, Del Potro has made his comeback and shown that he’s truly ready. The 30-year-old reached the quarter-finals of the ATP Masters 1000 event in Rome, holding two match points against World No. 1 Novak Djokovic.

Thursday’s match, at times, matched its environment – the new Court Simonne-Mathieu, named after the 1938 and 1939 Roland Garros women’s champion who, during World War II, signed up as a volunteer for the French Army.

The court is nestled below four greenhouses, each with plants from a different continent – Australia, Africa, South America, Asia – and watching a match there can feel as relaxing as a stroll through exotic gardens.

Infosys powers real-time insights for every point

Del Potro will hope for a more relaxing scoreline when he next faces Aussie Jordan Thompson. Thompson made his first Round of 32 at a Grand Slam by beating Croatian Ivo Karlovic 6-3, 6-4, 6-7(2), 6-3. On Tuesday, the 40-year-old Karlovic became the oldest man to win at Roland Garros since 1973. Thompson went 1-11 at tour-level last year but already is 15-10 this season.

Did You Know?
This is the fifth straight year the top eight seeds have reached the third round in Roland Garros. The top 8 seeds have not reached the third round at any of the other 12 Grand Slam events during that time (2015-18 Wimbledon, 2015-18 US Open, 2016-19 Australian Open).

Del Potro, Fognini and Khachanov Reach French Open Second Round

Roland Garros—Paris, France

First-round results:

(8) Juan Martin del Potro Defeats Nicolas Jarry 36 62 61 64
(9) Fabio Fognini Defeats Andreas Seppi 63 60 36 63
(10) Karen Khachanov Defeats Cedrik-Marcel Stebe 61 61 64
(18) Roberto Bautista Agut Defeats Steve Johnson 63 64 62
(22) Lucas Pouille Defeats Simone Bolelli 63 64 75
(23) Fernando Verdasco Defeats Daniel Evans 63 67(4) 63 62
(28) Kyle Edmund Defeats Jeremy Chardy 76(1) 57 64 46 75
(30) Dusan Lajovic Defeats Thiago Monteiro 63 64 64
Gregoire Barrere Defeats Matthew Ebden 63 57 75 61
Elliot Benchetrit Defeats Cameron Norrie 63 60 62
Federico Delbonis Defeats Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 61 36 63 62
Taylor Fritz Defeats Bernard Tomic 61 64 61
Antoine Hoang Defeats Damir Dzumhur 64 06 765 63
Ivo Karlovic Defeats Feliciano Lopez 76(4) 75 67(7) 75
Martin Klizan Defeats Mikhail Kukushkin 36 57 64 62 63
Yoshihito Nishioka Defeats Mackenzie McDonald 67(7) 60 46 62 63
Jordan Thompson Defeats Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 63 62 76(3)
Mikael Ymer Defeats Blaz Rola 60 63 76(5)