Del Potro Heartbreak

Posted on October 16 2018

Juan Martin Del Potro suffered yet another injury this past week to bring his season to a premature end. The Argentine, who has had terrible luck with injuries over recent years, suffered a fracture to his right patella after a heavy fall in his last 16 match against Borna Coric in Shanghai.


Juan Martin del Potro by Yann Caradec is licensed under CC BY 2.0


This is terrible timing for Del Potro who had seemed to have put his injury woes behind him having enjoyed an excellent 2018 which has seen him win titles in Indian Wells and Acapulco, as well as make the US Open final.


Del Potro seemed utterly heartbroken when he spoke to the ATP, “it’s a very difficult moment,” he said, “I feel very sad. It’s a hard blow that leaves me without strength. It’s very difficult for me to think about recovery again, I did not expect this to happen.”


The Argentine’s huge fan base will be just as upset to see the world number 4’s season come to an end, and he will be a sore miss at the end of season Tour Finals taking place in London in November.


An average patella fracture is likely to take around 6 to 8 weeks to recover, so hopefully, we will see Delpo back for the Australian Open. While the timing of the injury means that he is not likely to miss any Grand Slams, the real disappointment for Del Potro is the loss of momentum.


It seemed like Del Potro was finally having some luck with his injury problems in 2018, and that had translated into a very consistent year where he reached four finals and won two tournaments.


It may be difficult for Del Potro to think about recovery now, but there are few players with a better history of coming back from big injuries. In the past, Del Potro has fought his way back from injuries that saw him drop out of the world’s top 1000 to take his rightful place in the top 10.


After claiming his first Grand Slam title at the US Open in 2009 and reaching number 4 in the rankings in 2010, Del Potro suffered the first of his wrist injuries, keeping him out of the game for 9 months, and ensuring he missed out on the vast majority of the 2010 season.


This saw Delpo drop to 485 in the world at one point, but he fought his way back in 2011 to finish the year ranked number 11 in the world. The renaissance continued in 2012 and 2013 as Del Potro worked his way back into the world’s top 5, but in early 2014 a recurrence of his wrist pains meant a second surgery and an even longer layoff from the tennis court.


It wasn’t until 2016 that Del Potro would return to the court. In what was an incredible year considering the Argentinian had been out for so long with injury, Del Potro would claim a silver medal in the Rio Olympic and become a Davis Cup champion with his country.


Since his comeback, Del Potro has shown consistent improvement that has had fans excited about the prospect of a second Grand Slam title in 2019, but this latest injury will put an end to the positive momentum that Del Potro was building up, which is perhaps why his comments seem so despondent.


However, given some time, Del Potro will realise that if there is anyone who knows how to come back from such an injury it is him. Hopefully, this knee injury will be a quick fix in comparison to his wrist injuries, and he will be back on the court where he belongs soon!

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