After snatching the Tokyo Open title a couple of weeks back (where he has added his name to an illustrious group of winners), Juan Martin Del Potro (Bio) is ready to start his attack for the ATP World Number one spot.
Beating Canada’s Milos Raonic 7-6, 7-5 in the final of the tournament, Del Potro made his career intentions clear during the post-match press conference when he told reporters – “I played really well, beating fantastic players. It’s fantastic for me to win this title and now I’m very excited to keep improving my game because I want to get closer to the top guys.”
Although some may scoff given Nadal’s recent blistering return to form, Del Potro has proven (US Open 2009) that he can compete on a level playing field with the Big Four members when he toppled Nadal in the semis and snatched the title away from five-time Champion Roger Federer. As he said – “I beat these guys in the past and I know if I’m healthy, if I’m playing well I will have the chance in the future to beat them again and get closer to them in the rankings”
And he has proven how close he can get to them when he took Novak Djokovic to the longest semi-final in Wimbledon’s recent history this year. Although Delpo eventually bowed out with a 7-5, 4-6, 7-6, 6-7, 6-3 defeat, the match went on for four hours and 43 minutes and as the Argentinian knows he does have the potential to compete with former World Number 1 again but he just has “to be fit and healthy.”
Although he did suffer a shock second-round exit at the US Open last month, Del Potro’s wildcard entry into the Tokyo tournament was grabbed with both hands by the determined player. He has continued to be plagued by illnesses and injuries since his wrist surgery back in 2010, however renewed confidence and vigour means that this former US Open champ will make himself a force to be reckoned with during the 2014 season – “If I stay fit and my serve and forehand are working good too, who knows what I can do? I will keep believing in myself and look forward to improve my game for the future.”
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