Argentine starts another comeback from injury

Juan Martin del Potro expressed nothing but relief after re-starting his tennis career again with a winning comeback from injury.

The Argentine who still stands fourth in the world through the magic of ranking mathematics, began with a 6-3, 7-5 opening victory in Delray Beach against Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka.

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Delpo had not played since early October when he went down with a right knee injury in Shanghai – after a career riddled with wrist surgeries, it was looking dark at the time for the 30-year-old who won his only Grand Slam title a decade ago in New York.

“I thought horrible things, I got the fracture in the knee that I never expected to have,” he told the ATP upon his Florida return.

Juan Martin Del Potro at Wimbledon. Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd

“After bad days I started believing in my doctors again that I’ll play tennis soon and I think I’m in a good way again to be competitive.

“After four months, I’m going to be playing a tournament, which is good time.”

Del Potro was to have made his return at the Australian Open but declared himself not yet fit enough to compete.

“I know how difficult it is to be ready for playing in the big events and holding the top positions in the ranking. But this is my life and I know how to deal with these problems.”

After fighting back following his multiple wrist operations on both arm, the South American takes comebacks as a matter of course.

Juan Del Potro in third round action in New York.Photo: Karl Winter International Sports Photos

“I know it takes time and then you have to have enough confidence to move at 100 per cent, to feel the body in good shape and then the tennis part comes.

“I have to be healthy, and then I will start to think about tennis. But Delray Beach is a good time to see how my knee works during a match and then we’ll decide where’s going to be next.”

In early 2018, Del Potro began with promise, winning back-to-back titles in Acapulco followed by the Indian Wells Masters in March. he now faces must-win situations at both venues if he is to prevent a quick rankings slide.

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