No spam ever. Unsubscribe in one click. By submitting your email address, you indicate your consent to receiving email marketing messages from us.

Del Potro vs Opelka ATP Delray Beach live streaming, preview and tips - Del Potro faces New York champion Opelka in second round

Andrew Hendrie in ATP Tour 20 Feb 2019
  • Juan Martin del Potro vs Reilly Opelka is live from Delray Beach at 8.00pm local time on Thursday (1.00am GMT, Friday)
  • First career meeting between the pair
Juan Martin del Potro (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Juan Martin del Potro continues his comeback from a knee injury when he squares off against New York champion Reilly Opelka in the second round of the Delray Beach Open on Thursday night.

(geo restrictions apply; funded account required or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify)

World No. 4 Juan Martin del Potro will have his hands full in just his second match since October on Thursday night against recently-crowned New York champion Reilly Opelka in the second round of Delray Beach.

The Argentine has used Delray Beach as the launching pad for his season twice in recent years after sustaining injuries, beginning his season at the ATP 250 tournament in 2016 and 2017 - and on both occasions, he made the semi-finals, while he’s also a former champion at the tournament all the way back in 2011 and lost in the second round to eventual winner Frances Tiafoe last year. Playing his first match since fracturing his patella at the Shanghai Masters last year - and injury that forced him out of the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals and this year’s Australian Open - del Potro managed to prevail in straight sets against Yoshihito Nishioka, beating the Japanese player by a 6-3 7-5 scoreline. Of course it wasn’t a polished performance by any means, with del Potro relinquishing a break lead early in the second, but the fact he got the job done in straight sets would have been pleasing for the 2009 U.S. Open champion.

“It was a tough first round because Nishioka is a solid player from the baseline. But I played well in specific moments of the match,” Del Potro said. “I need to keep working hard on my legs because I felt tired at the end of the second set, but that's normal for [right now].”
“I didn't feel really well on court, but I think that's very normal for [right now]. I'm looking forward to feeling better in the next round,” he added. “I need time to get better, to feel confidence with my knee, with my body.”

Plagued by injuries since winning his one and only major title at the U.S. Open in 2009, including a series of wrist problems that have required four surgeries, del Potro put together his best season on tour in almost a decade in 2018, returning to the final of the U.S. Open and winning his first ATP Masters 1000 title in Indian Wells, where he saved match points to conquer Roger Federer. Del Potro also captured the ATP 500 crown in Acapulco and made the semi-finals of the French Open and quarter-finals of Wimbledon, qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time since 2013.

However, as mentioned, del Potro’s knee injury prevented him from participating at the season-ending championships, while he was also unable to compete in January, instead opting to slowly rehabilitate his body back into shape in his native Tandil. After getting one match (and a win) under his belt, how far can del Potro go in Delray Beach this week?

Reilly Opelka (Photo by Brett Hemmings/Getty Images)
Not past the second round if Reilly Opelka has any say in the matter. The towering American enjoyed a milestone moment at the New York Open last week, securing his maiden ATP World Tour title with wins over Adrian Mannarino, Denis Istomin, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, John Isner and Canadian qualifier Brayden Schnur in the final, winning his last two matches in deciding set tiebreaks and serving an ATP record 156 aces throughout the week. Opelka is showing no signs of slowing down either, proving he’s more than just a mammoth serve when he dropped just four games against Tennys Sandgren in the opening round of Delray Beach, prevailing 6-4 6-0.


The 21-year-old has fond memories of Delray Beach after earning his first top 10 win over Jack Sock at the tournament last year, advancing to the quarter-finals before going down to Peter Gojowczyk. Opelka would unfortunately be struck down by illness for two months of 2018 as she suffered from a bout of mononucleosis, but he ended the season on fire, putting together a 10-match winning streak as he picked up Challenger titles in Champaign and Knoxville, while he also finished runner-up in Chicago and Cary, altogether winning 18 of his last 22 matches of 2018.

Breaking into the top 100 as a result, Opelka began the season by reaching the second rounds of Sydney and the Australian Open (where he also beat Isner) and making the semi-finals of the Dallas Challenger, while his run to the title of New York last week propelled him to a career-high ranking of No. 56 coming into this tournament.

Unsurprisingly, this will be the first meeting between the pair, and it’s a great chance for Opelka to claim a prized top five scalp. Del Potro is still rusty coming back from injury and has never won Delray Beach when using the tournament as his comeback event. The Argentine won’t get any rhythm against the American, while Opelka (in my eyes) has been pretty impressive off the ground, while his movement is very good for a big man. He might be getting tired after six straight wins and barely any rest over the last week-and-a-half, but I think there’s value in backing Opelka on Thursday night.


Share this with your friends

To:
From:
Your comments:

Del Potro vs Opelka ATP Delray Beach live streaming, preview and tips - Del Potro faces New York champion Opelka in second round

Juan Martin del Potro continues his comeback from a knee injury when he squares off against New York champion Reilly Opelka in the second round of the Delray Beach Open on Thursday night.

Read more »

You have unread messages

You have unread messages