It has only been a few years, but many have forgotten that Juan Martin Del Potro is a former U.S. Open Champion. Not only is he a Champion but he defeated Rafa Nadal in the semifinals and Roger Federer in the Finals of the 2009 U.S. Open., a feat that only he can claim.
Del Potro advanced to the Fourth Round on Sunday defeating fellow Argentine Leonardo Mayer in straight sets. The win sets up a very compelling match up in prime time against Andy Roddick next. Del Potro will face a decisive pro Roddick crowd who do not want to see Roddick's career come to a close just yet. This match will be a tough one for Roddick, however.
Del Potro has been forgotten mainly due to a persistent wrist injury that kept him out of action for the majority of 2010 that dropped him all the way down to 485 in the ATP rankings in 2011.
Del Potro has spent the last couple of years working his way back to where he was when he won the U.S. Open and now finds himself 8th in the World. He won a bronze medal at the 2012 London Olympics and made the quarterfinals at the Australian Open earlier in the year.
It should be no surprise as the big Argentinian possesses an array of weapons. He has a big serve and has power from both his forehand and backhand and can beat you from the baseline with his big strokes, particularly from the forehand side.
If Andy Roddick is to extend his career beyond Tuesday, he will have to bring his A game. That match has the makings of being an instant Classic if both players play to their capabilities.
During this era of the "Big Four", it is worth noting that someone besides Federer, Djokovic and Nadal have won a U.S. Open Championship recently. His name is Juan Martin Del Potro.
(photo courtesy of Edwin Martinez)