Djokovic aims to cut ‘gentle giant’ Del Potro down to size

Djokovic aims to cut ‘gentle giant’ Del Potro down to size

His extended time away from the game may have denied the 29-year-old Del Potro a chance to elbow his way in among the game's "Big Four" of Nadal, Federer, Djokovic and Andy Murray. "I'm going to keep going", he said.

While a victory for Del Potro, nine years after he won his sole major trophy at the same venue, is undoubtedly the feelgood moment that most tennis purists will be hoping for. "I'm here now", he said after advancing when defending champion Rafael Nadal quit after two sets in their semifinal because of right knee tendinitis.

Perhaps it's because del Potro was sandbagging.

As Del Potro concentrates on his opportunity to win a second Grand Slam, the outgoing champion will instead have to ponder his future and wonder what might have been, were it not for yet more injury woe.

Djokovic said: "Seeing the consistency of the results I've had here, probably it has been my most successful Grand Slam".

" It's not the best way to win a match".

I'm having two great years.

"I had some issues during the tournament". Djokovic shut himself down for the last half of 2017, sitting out the U.S. Open among other events and, after a brief attempt to play at the start of this season, had an operation in February.

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The friends who have come to NY from his home town of Tandil and been so vocal in their support played an important role in keeping Del Potro believing that things would one day be better.

Back from career-threatening wrist problems, Del Potro has shone throughout this tournament, but will have his work cut out to deny former world No. 1 Djokovic if the Serbian reproduces the form he showed on Friday. Of course, I like to play always with the number one of the world, it doesn't matter the tournament or the conditions. "I am focused on trying to make that happen".

Rafael NadalAfter seven years of struggles, Nadal is finally looking like a contender again at Wimbledon and is playing a lot like the man who reached his fifth final in 2011, except for this flat-faced fall. I was not feeling worst of my knee today before the match or yesterday when I practiced. Then I think was little bit better. "Reaching finals, winning titles, having my highest ranking ever in this moment, everything is nearly ideal", he said. He's done it before, but only four times in 18 meetings.

"It will be a hard match because we are close friends", said the Argentinian. But Novak has won the Wimbledon already. He's playing so good. "He will be the favourite to win on Sunday", he said. I know what I have.

"There was always part of me that believed I could come back relatively quickly to the level of tennis that I once was playing. But it definitely makes me realize that, OK, I can definitely do my best if he can, too".

Nishikori was content to stay at the baseline in the first set, and Djokovic dominated, breaking in the second game and often forcing Nishikori to overhit while on the run.

In an interview about facing Del Potro, who has spent a few years recovering on-and-off from a wrist surgery, Djokovic said: "Well, I personally like him very much, not just as a player but as a person". He's a dear friend, someone that I respect a lot.

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