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US Open 2013: Juan Martin del Potro vs Lleyton Hewitt Round 2 Preview

By Abhimanyu Nagpal    + Follow

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Keywords: US Open | Lleyton-Hewitt | Juanmartin-Delpotro
US Open 2013: Juan Martin del Potro vs Lleyton Hewitt Round 2 Preview
Two former champions collide inside Arthur Ashe Stadium as 2009 champion Juan Martin del Potro squares off with 2001 champion Lleyton Hewitt in the first match of the evening session on Day 5.

Argentina’s only Grand Slam champion – Juan Martin del Potro may have avoided hot favourite Rafael Nadal in the draw, but he most certainly hasn’t got the easiest one still. He already had the knowledge of the possibility of a reunion with World No.1 Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals, which is why he probably hoped that his opening round match against Guillermo Garcia-Lopez would not be an extensive test.

However, as fortune would have it, the rain interrupted match lasted more than four hours in the end. And what’s more, if the 24 year-old thought it was time for him to breathe a sigh of relief, he would be in for a shock. His second round opponent is none other than former World No.1 Lleyton Hewitt, who is absolutely adored by fans here in New York.

Hewitt, who won the title back in 2001, maybe 33 years of age now but he continues to play with a big heart. It is that tenacity behind the baseline that can be a major cause for concern for Del Potro, who comes into the US Open this year as one of the dark horses. The match is set to divide opinions and the crowd inside the Arthur Ashe Stadium as both these players are crowd favourites.

It will also be a clash of styles, as Del Potro is regarded as one of the most aggressive players in the modern game, while his opponent is a veteran of counter punching tennis. The Aussie has played many epic battles here at Flushing Meadows, and has reached the semi-finals at the event 5 times, which include a runner-up position in 2004 to add to his solitary title in 2001.

This is perhaps the biggest match of the final Grand Slam of the year, and the prospect of the two playing at the top of their games tonight is mighty exciting.

Head to Head: What makes this an even more intriguing encounter is the fact that even statistically speaking there is nothing to choose between them. The two have met four times in the past, and both have a victory apiece against each other. However, both of their hard court clashes were won by Del Potro, which is something that tilts the tie in the Argentine’s favour.

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US Open, Men Singles  Final
Kei Nishikori (JPN) 0 3 3 3
Marin Cilic (CRO) Winner 3 6 6 6
Nishikori - Cilic    3 - 6    3 - 6    3 - 6   
Served By: M Cilic Won By: Cilic
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