Juan Martin del Potro not only met a few dolphins yesterday in Miami, but also some journalists. Not sure which he liked more, but del Potro talked to the reporters about his comeback, revealing that it took him 18 months to mentally be ready for tennis after his first surgery on his right wrist in 2010. Unfortunately, he hinted, it looks like a similar timeline with his left wrist.
“When I operated my right hand, I played a year and a half thinking about my hand, with fear and with some discomfort too,” del Potro said. “Until one day, that feeling disappeared completely and I could play freely from the mental standpoint, and now with the left hand it is a bit the same.”
Del Potro is playing just his second event in the last 12 months since undergoing left wrist surgery about a year ago.
The 26-year-old returned in Sydney winning two matches, showing signs of promise. But he was still not 100% confident in his left wrist, so he withdrew from the Australian Open and underwent a second surgery in January.
Del Potro’s 7th Miami appearance has him playing Thursday against Vasek Pospisil. The 26-year-old once beat Rafael Nadal in Miami en route to the 2009 semifinals.
“I think being here in this tournament energises me again,” said del Potro. “At times I feel a bit far in the rankings. I know I have a long way to go. When I was No. 4 in the world, everything was much easier. Even the objectives that I had were different.
“But that’s life. Those are things that happen to athletes, and this is something that I had to deal with and I am just very happy to play tennis again.”
Del Potro hasn’t played a Masters event since reaching the quarterfinals at 2013 Paris. He is currently ranked No. 616.
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