Indian Wells: Federer loses to Juan Martin Del Porto

Del Potro Saves 3 Championship Points to Win Heated Battle with Federer

"I can not believe I won this tournament, beating Roger in a great final and level of tennis", he said of his first win at Indian Wells and his second straight ATP Tour title. Federer settled in and got the second set to a tiebreaker, which he appeared to win until a delayed challenge by del Potro overturned Federer's serve on set point. I can't believe I'm here winning a Masters tournament. Even early in the second set I think he had break point chances. And I'm excited to keep working ...

Del Potro went on to dominate the deciding tiebreak, winning 7-2 to claim his maiden Masters 1000 title.

The 29-year-old suffered wrist problems in recent years.

"But I had already missed my opportunities then, but I still, standing at the trophy ceremony, I think I would like to play that tie-break again, because I don't know what the hell happened".

Though Federer is seven years older than del Potro, they have a warm relationship.

World No.1, Federer was on a 17-match winning streak that has seen him win the Australian Open but he was stopped in the final from clinching a sixth Indian Wells title in three sets. (Having said that), Juan Martin well played today. "It was maybe a point here or there, maybe a shot, maybe a forehand, maybe a chip".

Naomi Osaka smashes the ball in the final round, going on to win her first WTA title.

"I was surprised how long it took him to get more and more confident coming over, but I feel like he's finally there".

It was then Del Potro's turn to rue a missed opportunity, dumping his usually reliable forehand into the net as he went for the victor on match point.

Del Potro was considered a genuine threat to Federer's dominance of the game when he won at Flushing Meadows in 2009 but has been dogged since by a series of wrist problems which nearly ended his career.

Federer's five Indian Wells titles included previous year, when he beat fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka. Had Federer been more clinical in those moments he might have finished his opponent.

World number eight Del Potro is back in the rankings top 10 after dropping to 1,045th before beginning his comeback from three left wrist surgeries in 2016. His forehand is a shot of such devastating power as shall likely never be seen again. Or steel. Call it what you like, but Del Potro has it in abundance.

Rafael Nadal has also displayed such persistence - as did Federer during his six-month lay-off - and it's something both Djokovic and Murray must find within themselves now. Del Potro holds a 4-2 record over Federer in finals (though the Swiss leads their overall head-t0-head 18-7). To suggest that Del Potro is ready to beat two of these four at a major tournament would be jumping the gun after just one triumph.

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