RIO DE JANEIRO, August 13, 2016
Andy Murray and Juan Martin Del Potro will collide in Sunday’s Gold Medal Match of the Rio 2016 Olympic Tennis Event.
On Friday afternoon, Murray advanced to his second consecutive Olympics final with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Kei Nishikori. The world number two didn’t face a break point, converting three of his own to advance in one hour and 20 minutes.
Murray is going for a second singles gold. “It would mean a lot. It’s obviously not an easy thing to do, that’s why it’s not been done before, but I will go out there and give it my best effort. I’m happy that I’m guaranteed a medal after today but the goal is to win a gold medal. I’ll give it my best effort tomorrow to win another one.”
About his opponent Murray added: “Juan Martin has played great this event. Again I think he obviously gained a lot of confidence from his win against Novak, and he won against Wawrinka at Wimbledon, so he’s starting to get back to a level he can play at after his wrist problems. It’s good for him.”
Nishikori looks ahead to the Bronze medal match on Sunday.
“I hope I can recover well tonight and refresh my mind for tomorrow. “This is something new for me, after losing I have to play one more match for the medal so hopefully I can recover well, especially on the mental side, and I hope I can play good tennis tomorrow.”
Later the day, Juan Martin Del Potro continued his dream run, winning 5-7, 6-4, 7-5 over Rafael Nadal. The Argentine, who clinched the Bronze medal in London four years ago, sent down 11 aces, hit 39 winners and broke the Spaniard’s serve three times to prevail in three hours and eight minutes. Del Potro converted his second match point when Nadal fired a forehand long, and dropped to the floor in delight.
“I cannot describe this moment in words, it’s amazing,” Del Potro was overwhelmed right after the match.
“It was good match, good level of tennis and all I can say is congratulations to Del Potro. I try my best, I give my best ’til the last ball but that’s like this. I am very satisfied by what I did the whole week. Tomorrow is another day and I going to try to be ready for it,” Nadal said.
Murray leads Del Potro 5-2 in previous match-ups. The Argentine won the last meeting between the two in the quarterfinal of the ATP Masters 1000 tournament in Indian Wells three years ago.