Del Potro Ends Opelka's Run In Delray Beach
Juan Martin del Potro said it would take time for him to build confidence after a four-month injury layoff, but it could be a speedy process for the Argentine after the tennis he displayed on Thursday night at the Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com.
The top seed struck his forehand with authority and held his nerve in crucial moments to end the six-match winning streak of Reilly Opelka with a convincing 6-4, 6-4 victory. Del Potro didn't face a break point and booked a quarter-final spot for the fourth time in five appearances in Delray Beach.
Del Potro has always been methodical about his comeback attempts, waiting until he’s fully ready to return rather than rushing back too soon. His performance on Thursday indicated that if his right knee continues to hold up, he can pick up where he left off at the end of last year.
A forehand error from Opelka at 1-1 in the opening set gifted del Potro an early break and the top seed held that momentum to take the early advantage. Little separated the two players in the second set, but a backhand error from Opelka on break point at 4-4 allowed the Argentine to serve out the match after 73 minutes.
Next up for del Potro is another American in Mackenzie McDonald, who required just a single break in each set to defeat Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 7-5, 6-4. This is the second ATP quarter-final for McDonald, who also accomplished the feat last June at the Ricoh Open.
Radu Albot of Moldova held off Nick Kyrgios of Australia to advance 6-2, 3-6, 6-3. The 29-year-old was especially tidy on serve in the deciding set, winning 80 per cent (20/25) of his service points to advance in one hour and 24 minutes. Albot is playing some of his best tennis, having reached his second ATP Tour semi-final earlier this month in Montpellier.
He’ll take on fourth seed Steve Johnson in the quarter-finals after the American held off Italian Paolo Lorenzi 7-5, 7-5. Johnson saved all six break points he faced and broke Lorenzi in the final game of each set to pick up the win after one hour and 57 minutes.
“I was having a hard time being accurate with my shots, so I’m glad I served well today,” said Johnson. “I’m happy I have a chance to play another competitive match tomorrow and hopefully clean things up.”
Bryan Brothers Move Into Last Four
Top seeds Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan didn't drop serve in a comfortable 6-3, 7-5 quarter-final win over French pair Adrian Mannarino and Hugo Nys. The Americans will seek their first doubles final of the season when they face Marcelo Arevalo and Jamie Cerretani, who defeated third seeds Robert Lindstedt and Tim Puetz 7-6(2), 7-6(5).