‘More of a farewell’ – Juan Martin del Potro hints at imminent retirement
Juan Martin del Potro revealed he will likely retire after his appearance at the Argentina Open, saying he “wants to live like a normal 33 year old” free of pain.
Last week it was announced that del Potro would compete at both the Argentina Open and the Rio Open in what many thought was a return after a three year absence, although del Potro has now revealed it is more of a goodbye than him staging another return.
Del Potro looked destined for great things before injuries heavily hindered his chances of success. He won his first and only Grand Slam at the 2009 US Open after beating Swiss maestro Roger Federer and reached a career-high ranking of third in the world.
The Argentine icon suffered multiple severe injuries, all of which ruled him out for considerable amounts of time.
He suffered two wrist injuries, one in 2010 that ruled him out for a year and another in 2014 that saw him miss two years. Most recently, del Potro fractured his knee cap at the 2019 Wimbledon Championships which saw him endure three years on the side-lines.
Del Potro’s injuries have earned him the tag of “the unluckiest man in tennis” from renowned coach Toni Nadal, Rafael Nadal’s former coach and uncle.
Speaking in a press conference ahead of the upcoming Argentina Open, del Potro said “before I start this conference I would like to send a message.
“I have spent a lot of time thinking and imagining about this day, and I think this is one of the most difficult messages I will ever deliver.
“I know that people are expecting me to return to tennis, but this may be more of a farewell than a return.
“I have strength to go forward but my knee is becoming a nightmare. I have been trying alternative treatments for a number of years, with different doctors and attempts to fix it.
“But I have still not found a solution. But I never imagined retiring from tennis without having the chance to say goodbye and I can’t imagine a better tournament than Buenos Aires (Argentina Open) to do it.
“After these weeks we will see what happens with my future, but I am clear that I want to live like a person of 33 years and try to not have pain.
“It’s a difficult decision, but I wanted to make it clear.”
Whilst del Potro said he could retire after the Argentina Open, he is yet to withdraw from the Rio Open that takes place the following week.
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