Del Potro coach reveals 2018 aim

15 December 2017 00:02:14 GMTPlus11

Juan Martin Del Potro can enjoy a successful 2018 if he can maintain his current fitness levels, according to his coach Sebastian Prieto.

The 29-year-old 2009 US Open winner has had to battle back from two long-term wrist injuries over the past seven years and had tumbled down the world rankings.

The...pre-season is important as it provides a good base for the whole season. He should play like he did in recent times, for the whole year.

Sebastian Prieto

However, after clear signs of improvement in 2016, which included a silver medal at the Rio Olympics, Del Potro has had a more consistent run this past year, while his appointment of Prieto just before the US Open has paid dividends.

The Argentinian reached the semi-finals at Flushing Meadows, courtesy of a last-eight victory over Roger Federer, before going on to reach the final in Basel and he then won in Stockholm.

Del Potro subsequently moved up to 11th in the rankings and only narrowly missed out on a place in the end-of-season ATP World Tour Finals at London's O2 Arena last month.

And, when assessing Del Potro's chances of further improvement next year, Prieto told TenisZone: "I am finding him a very calm person, relaxed on a day-to-day basis, but focused and strict with himself in terms of work. He is a top player in terms of work ethic and mentality."

He added: "I think the goal is for him to be physically healthy and compete in good form for the whole year.

"The...pre-season is important as it provides a good base for the whole season. He should play like he did in recent times, for the whole year."

Del Potro, who will begin his season at the ASB Classic in Auckland, is 15.00 to win the first Grand Slam of 2018, the Australian Open next month, while he is 21.00 to win a second US Open title.

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