Juan Martin del Potro has shared his wish to see Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz face off in the final of the US Open. A former champion in Flushing Meadows, the Argentine had been hoping for a magical farewell at the tournament this year before admitting that it wouldn’t be possible with his ongoing knee injury. Del Potro has now turned his attention to his dream final just days after Djokovic also said he wanted to face Alcaraz for the US Open title.
Djokovic and Alcaraz recently treated tennis fans to another thrilling final, this time in Cincinnati. The 36-year-old came from a set-and-a-break down to defeat the world No 1 5-7 7-6(7) 7-6(4) in three hours and 49 minutes.
It was revenge for the Wimbledon final contested exactly five weeks earlier where the Spaniard became the first man in a decade to defeat Djokovic on Centre Court, needing five sets to lift his second Grand Slam title. And Del Potro is now hoping they can make it three finals in a row at the US Open.
An old rival of Djokovic’s, Del Potro knew exactly what it was like to come up against the 23-time Grand Slam winner on the biggest stages and he hoped to see Alcaraz continue to navigate the tricky task. “First, for the tennis fans, would be great to see them fighting very often,” he told Tennis.com.
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“I think people will get crazy watching them playing finals, as they did in Wimbledon. At the moment, they are the two guys playing tennis in another level.” The 2009 US Open champion named some other stars who also impressed him but admitted that Djokovic and Alcaraz were in a league of their own.
The 34-year-old continued: “You have very good players like Daniil Medvedev, Alexander Zverev, Casper Ruud, many others. But these two players, for me, from my point of view and how I understand the game, they are even better than the rest, for now. I will be watching on TV.”
It comes after Djokovic said he wanted to face Alcaraz again after coming through their three-set battle on Sunday. “It did feel like a Grand Slam final. Even more than that. Every match that we play against each other goes the distance, I’m hoping we can play in some weeks’ time in New York, that would be nice,” he said in his speech, laughing as he added: “For the crowd, I don’t know about me.”
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US Open tennis makes its long-awaited return to Sky Sports and it’s certainly not something to be missed.
Sky Sports subscribers on Sky Glass, Sky Stream, Sky Q, and the Sky Sports app will be able to watch all courts for the first time on Sky Sports.
Want to watch the US Open Tennis but don’t own Sky?
Never fear as you can get Sky Glass, Sky TV, Netflix for £14 a month for six months – thanks to a limited time deal.
You can also get six months Sky Sports completely free.
Del Potro himself contested a US Open final against Djokovic in 2018, losing in straight sets. And he won his only Major title in Flushing Meadows as a 20-year-old back in 2009. The Argentine had hoped to make a miraculous return to New York this year but recently announced that it wouldn’t be possible.
The 22-time title winner has played just one match since re-injuring his knee at Queen’s in 2019. Del Potro looked set to make a comeback at the Argentina Open last February but admitted it could instead be the final tournament of his career. He was in tears as he lost in the first round, uncertain as to whether he could compete again.
Last week, the former world No 3 said it currently wasn’t realistic to think about a return to tennis because of his knee injury and he has since shifted his focus to improving the quality of his life. Del Potro had been known for his signature ‘hammer’ forehand on the tour, with the likes of Roger Federer even nicknaming him Thor.
And the 34-year-old thought that it was Alcaraz who had the closest shot to his trademark weapon. “I don’t know if someone has the hammer now, but I think Carlitos Alcaraz. He hit his forehand really strong too. He has also a potential to hit better in the future years,” Del Potro said.
“I’m crazy about his game, about his charisma. I like a lot the way that he moves in the court. And I think he’s making very good things for the sport. After the Big Three moves out, the transition is going to be in good hands with Carlitos, with Jannik Sinner also. These guys has the potential to be at the top for the next years.”
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