Wawrinka beats Del Potro to reach U.S. Open semis
Send a link to a friend
[September 08, 2016]
By Larry Fine
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Swiss third seed
Stan Wawrinka outlasted tiring former champion Juan Martin del Potro
in four sets to advance to the semi-finals of the U.S. Open on
Twice grand slam winner Wawrinka ended the rousing comeback effort
by the Argentine at Flushing Meadows with a 7-6(5) 4-6 6-3 6-2 win
to close out Day 10 at the year's last grand slam.
Del Potro, the 2009 winner, had missed nine successive slams due to
a string of wrist surgeries before returning to Wimbledon, where he
ousted Wawrinka in the second round and went on to claim silver at
the Rio Olympics.
"It was an amazing match for me, one of my toughest matches,
mentally and physically against Juan Martin," Wawrinka said in an
on-court interview. "He's an incredible player and I'm really happy
to have won that match."
A crowd favorite at Flushing Meadows since his five-set finals win
over Roger Federer, del Potro charged to a 4-1 lead in the opening
set before Wawrinka brought the set back on serve in the seventh
Del Potro's big forehand betrayed him in the tie-breaker, with three
errors helping the Swiss claim the decider 7-5.
The Argentine had his right shoulder manipulated during a second-set
changeover at 2-3 and he responded with a service break for a 4-3
lead and served out the set.
As the match wore on, it became evident that a lack of conditioning
was wearing del Potro down and he became selective about which
points to contest.
The fit Wawrinka charged to victory, finding the range with his
stylish one-handed backhand for winners up the line.
As del Potro went out for the last game, the fans that had
remained as the clock moved past 1:00 a.m. serenaded him and the big
Argentine wiped away tears as "Ole, ole, ole, ole, Delpo, Delpo,"
rained down from the Arthur Ashe Stadium stands
[to top of second column]
Stan Wawrinka of
Switzerland reacts during the match against Juan Martin Del Potro of
Argentina on day ten of the 2016 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA
Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry
Lai-USA TODAY Sports
"Something difficult to describe with words," del Potro, who is
ranked 142 and given a wild card into the event, told reporters
about the salute.
"I can lose the match, but I will never forget this. It's bigger
than a win in any match."
Wawrinka, the 2014 Australian Open winner and 2015 French Open
champion, will next meet sixth seed Kei Nishikori of Japan, the 2014
Flushing Meadows runner-up, who upset world number two Andy Murray
in five sets in their quarter-final.
Friday's other men's semi-final will pit world number one Novak
Djokovic against French 10th seed Gael Monfils.
(Editing by Ian Ransom/Sudipto Ganguly)
[© 2016 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2016 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.