"Today I can only walk, I cannot climb the stairs without pain" - Del Potro gives insight into life after several surgeries

Former World No.3 Juan Martin Del Potro retired earlier this year in Argentina but he's battling with a hard desire to return to competing.

The 2009 US Open champion was always known as a hard opponent and a fantastic talent. After all, he was the first person to dethrone Roger Federer at Flushing Meadows after Federer had dominated for a number of years there. He had been prepared to retire from tennis for a time, and it eventually happened in Buenos Aires early this year but it was anything but easy.

"The last time I picked up the racket was in Buenos Aires," admitted the 34-year old. "Later I did a couple of tests, but no: the truth is that the decision to play in Buenos Aires cost me a lot. And once I did that, and everyone saw the state of things, you know, that was a relief, a turning point in my life."

Even if he retired from tennis the burning desire to compete is still there and it will never leave. That is why Del Potro is still hoping and searching for a solution.

"I recently went to Switzerland to see another doctor," he revealed. "I started another treatment, it was recommended by many tennis players and so far I have not even had a positive result. Imagine what it’s like after every treatment attempt or surgery, the frustration I can feel when things don’t work out. As usual, I delude myself, I hope, I have faith in every new treatment I try and, when this fails, the blow is hard.

"And for three and a half years, despite several surgeries and treatments, it always happened. Today I can only walk, I do not run on the treadmill, and I cannot climb the stairs without pain. I can’t drive for a long time without stopping to stretch my legs.

"I can’t psychologically accept a life without tennis. I did not have a gradual transition to the after, I did not prepare, I have no idea what the other athletes did to live this process peacefully. I was number three in the world, then suddenly I broke on my knees and here I am, with nothing."

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ATP Juan Martin del Potro

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