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Juan Martin del Potro Roland Garros ATP

Juan Martin del Potro confirms absence from ATP 500 Rio Open


The ATP 500 Rio Open has confirmed that Juan Martin del Potro will not play the event as has been hinted in recent weeks. 

The 2009 US Open champion was initially undecided on whether he would play in Rio de Janeiro after going out of his home event at the ATP 250 Argentina Open in Buenos Aires this week.

Ahead of that tournament, del Potro sensationally announced that his expected comeback was more likely to be a farewell that a resurgence as he strongly hinted at retirement.

“I have strength to go forward but my knee is becoming a nightmare,” the 33-year-old said of his injury woes.

With his absence from the Rio Open, fans may have seen the last of the Argentinian gentle giant on the ATP tour.

Del Potro’s appearance at the Argentina Open was his first competitive tennis for over two and a half years, having last played at Queen’s in June 2019.

Ranked at 757th in the world, he accepted a wildcard into Buenos Aires, playing an emotional match with compatriot Federico Delbonis.

Del Potro’s final service game was particularly heartbreaking as he broke into tears from the back of the court as the magnitude of the moment dawned on him.

 

Del Potro was kept away from the tour these past years by his right knee, undergoing multiple surgeries including one in Chicago last year in an attempt to return to competition.

The ATP tour and tennis fans more generally will miss the powerful Argentinian when he officially hangs up his racket.

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