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Juan Martin del Potro to undergo knee surgery after fracturing right kneecap again

Hannah Wilks in News 20 Jun 2019
  • Juan Martin del Potro to undergo knee surgery
  • Del Potro re-fractured right kneecap slipping on grass at Queen's Club
  • Latest devastating injury blow for the Argentine
Juan Martin del Potro has suffered another devastating injury blow (PA Sports)

Juan Martin del Potro has fractured his right kneecap again and will undergo surgery.

In the latest devastating blow to a man whose career has been decimated by injury, Juan Martin del Potro announced on Thursday that he has again suffered a fracture of his right kneecap and will undergo surgery.

The world no. 12 was pictured on crutches with his right leg heavily braced.

Del Potro slipped on the grass midway through the second set of his match against Denis Shapovalov at the Fever-Tree Championships on Wednesday, as he attacked the net. Although he closed out the 7-5, 6-4 victory, he was seen wincing and limping during the final games of the match and pulled out of the doubles draw shortly afterwards.

Del Potro's communication manager Jorge Viale posted an update on Twitter confirming that del Potro had suffered 'pain and swelling' as a result of the fall and was consulting doctors.

The Fever-Tree Championships confirmed later on Wednesday that del Potro had withdrawn from the tournament, giving Feliciano Lopez a walkover into the quarterfinals.

The news got worse on Thursday as Viale confirmed via Twitter that del Potro had suffered a fracture of his right kneecap and would undergo surgery.

'The medical studies done last night in a clinic in London show that Juan Martin del Potro has suffered again a fracture in his right patella,' Viale's statement read.

'After consultation with his doctor, Angel Cotorro, it has been determined that it will require surgery. This will take place in the next couple of days with a date and a location to be confirmed.'

This is not the first time that del Potro has fractured his right kneecap. The Argentine fell and fractured that patella during a match at the Shanghai Masters last October and subsequently missed five months out of competition before returning at the Delray Beach Open in February.

Del Potro in action at Queen's Club (PA Sports)
Del Potro played three matches at the Delray Beach Open in February but subsequently pulled out of Indian Wells and Miami and was rumoured to be considering surgery. In the event he did not undergo surgery, but was kept off court until May when he returned to competition at the Madrid Masters. Del Potro's comeback appeared to be gathering momentum as he made the quarterfinals of the Rome Masters and the round of 16 at the French Open, coming into the grass-court season in good form.

But this latest setback is a devastating blow for the 2009 US Open champion, whose career has been punctuated by a series of major injuries requiring surgical intervention. Winning the US Open as a teenager was followed immediately by playing only six matches in 2010 as del Potro underwent surgery to treat tendonitis in his right wrist. Del Potro worked his way back up the rankings, but was only able to play 14 matches in 2014-15 as he was absent for virtually two years due to tendonitis in his left wrist, which required multiple surgeries. The Argentine confessed recently that he had actually given up on a return to professional tennis during this period, only to decide to attempt one last surgery. 

It worked - since his comeback in February 2016, del Potro re-entered the top 10, won multiple titles including a first Masters 1000 Series, claimed an Olympic silver medal and played a pivotal role in Argentina's Davis Cup triumph, and in 2018 reached the semifinals of the French Open and the final of the US Open, rising to a career-high world no. 3.

But this latest significant injury blow, and the absence from competition it will enforce, will have many wondering unhappily about whether del Potro has another unlikely, gallant comeback left in him.

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Juan Martin del Potro to undergo knee surgery after fracturing right kneecap again

In the latest injury blow to the career of Juan Martin del Potro, the Argentine announced that he has fractured his right kneecap again and will have to undergo surgery after slipping on slick grass at Queen's Club

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