Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) – Former top-five star Juan Martin del Potro
came up a first-round loser Thursday in his first match since mid-January
at the Miami Open, the second consecutive Masters 1000 event on the ATP World
Capable Canadian Vasek Pospisil dismissed his fellow non-seed del Potro in
6-4, 7-6 (9-7) fashion on the hardcourts at Crandon Park.
“I don’t feel frustrated,” del Potro said. “I have to take the positive things
on my comeback. The score doesn’t matter for now.
“I didn’t serve well in the special moments,” the Argentine added. “But now
I’m OK. Just playing the tournament and being here means a lot for me.”
The oft-injured del Potro had been sidelined for more than two months with a
left wrist injury. He finished last season outside the Top 100 for the first
time since 2005 after contesting just four tournaments during the year. The
2009 U.S. Open champ opened the 2014 season with an 18th career title in
Sydney, but underwent surgery in March and missed the rest of the campaign.
Meanwhile, Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin doused American favorite and two-
time NCAA singles champion Steve Johnson 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 and Italian Simone
Bolelli subdued fading former Australian Open runner-up Marcos Baghdatis 6-2,
Additional opening-round wins came for Pole Jerzy Janowicz, Croatian teen
Borna Coric, Colombian Alejandro Falla, Russians Mikhail Youzhny and Teymuraz
Gabashvili, and German Alexander Zverev.
No. 1 seed Novak Djokovic is the defending champion and will be seeking his
fifth Miami title. Last week’s Indian Wells titlist beat four-time Miami
runner-up Rafael Nadal in last year’s marquee final in South Florida, in a
rematch of the 2011 final also captured by Djokovic.
Djokovic will open up here against Klizan on Saturday. The Slovakian Klizan
beat Italian Paolo Lorenzi 6-3, 6-4 on Day 2.
The winner of this $5.4 million event will claim $900,400.